Two ‘little men’ with a major musical goal


Two former bandmates are working to revive the club scene in Oakville by giving local rock bands a platform to share their music.

For the last three years, Chris Flynn, 23, and Chris Laurignano, 25, have been putting on rock shows for all ages in Oakville under the name Little Men Promotions.

The two Chrises grew up in Oakville and became good friends while playing in the band Amber Damned. “Little Men Promotions started right around the time our band broke up,” says Laurignano.

The project started out in response to the lack of shows being put on in the community. “When we were in high school there were shows going on in Oakville but after awhile they stopped,” said Flynn. “So we decided to put on shows ourselves.”

At first, however, the duo had to seek out bands themselves in order to convince them to play at Little Men gigs. They would scour Facebook for hours and contact local bands that had roughly 200 to 300 “likes,” figuring they would have some sort of audience. Now that they have built a reputation around Oakville they put on one to two shows each month.

They will promote any acts ranging from garage rock to funk as well as experimental rock bands.

A big part of Little Men Promotions’ ideology is making their shows accessible to anyone, not just those above the drinking age. “The only place you could put on a show in Oakville was Less Than Level but they’re 19-plus,” said Flynn. “So we figured we could just go to restaurants – that we can do the ‘all ages’ thing.”

The two primary locations where they hold concerts are Lourice, the Mediterranean restaurant at 1289 Marlborough Ct., and a pizzeria, Nino Panino at 438 Kerr St.

On an average night four bands play per show with 80 or so people in attendance, according to the entrepreneurs. However, Little Men Promotions’ goal is to encourage a larger music scene in Oakville.


Chris Laurignano (left) and Chris Flynn (right) in their “jam room”. (Photo by Ryan Sagadore/The Sheridan Sun)

“Little Men Promotions is the only reason Oakville nightlife is so bumping right now,” said Carlos Mallia, a guitarist in Cosmic Mojo. “Without them Oakville’s music scene would never be the same.”

The scene has been growing over the last few years as they continue to put on shows for various indie acts from the GTA, including Cosmic Mojo, Dead Broke, Look Here Junior and Old Flame.

Flynn’s current band, Somersaulter, and Laurignano’s band, Casper Skulls, also play Little Men gigs from time to time.

“Working with them has really helped our band gain confidence through giving us the experience we need,” said Old Flame guitarist Jacob Speers. “I don’t think we could’ve gotten as much exposure and experience if they weren’t around.”

Little Men Promotions has two shows this month. The first is an LP release for the band The Folk on Oct. 10 at Nino Panino. The second is on Oct. 19 at Lourice and will coincide with an exhibit of artwork from the Illustration program at Sheridan.

“There’s going to be four bands playing and then after their sets are over there’s going to be a silent auction for a bunch of art pieces from the Illustration students at Sheridan,” said Laurignano. “Plus you can also get yourself a shawarma and a beer.”

Both Little Men are in university, Flynn a first year York student taking Work and Labour Studies while Laurignano is in fourth year at Ryerson studying finance.

As far as long-term goals, the duo hope that they can give their creation to the next generation of budding musicians.

“Eventually we’d like to pass the torch down to someone else and they can take over Little Men Promotions,” said Laurignano. “I think what we want to see is a full-time music venue in Oakville and a consistent music culture.”

If you are interested in upcoming Little Men shows you can visit their Facebook page in the link here.