Caston Holt, known as “CAPTAIN,” is a rapper who grew up in East Knoxville. He said he was shocked when he got the call asking him to open.
“Lil Wayne has always been one of my favorites, and so being able to open for him is a dream come true,” he said.
CAPTAIN was planning on attending the show as a fan before receiving that call.
“He’s the G.O.A.T in my opinion. So being able to do that in my hometown, it’s crazy. Still hasn’t sunk in all the way,” he said.
His love for music started at a young age, while growing up in East Knoxville and then attending Gibbs High School.
“Growing up I’ve always just loved music I loved hip-hop music and growing up when I was 13, 14, I had a buddy in school, Zeke, who’s older brother Zack Scott showed me how to make beats and gave me some beats to rap on,” he said. “He just showed me how to mix and master and do that and ever since I’ve been making my own original music.”
CAPTAIN has nods to his hometown throughout his music, specifically on his song “Shallow.”
He said Lil Wayne’s choice to pick a local artist is a great way to highlight the cities he performs in.
“I feel like that’s super-cool, for me to have the chance to be that for Knoxville. I think it’s huge for him to come anyway so I think that’s awesome for our city,” he said. “So to represent in that way, it’s awesome. It’s a huge honor.”
Knoxville is home to many big-name musicians, most being country artists. However, CAPTAIN thinks the local hip-hop scene could be the next to take off.
“The country scene is huge here in Knoxville, and rightfully so. They’ve got Kenny Chesney, Morgan Wallen, Kelsea Ballerini – huge stars. I feel like hip-hop could definitely see a trend like that, one after another maybe just blow up. The talent’s there, the dedication’s there, and the music’s there,” he said.
He wants other aspiring artists to know that anything is possible.
“Stay on your path and keep going, don’t give up,” he said.
The concert is scheduled for Nov. 16th in Thompson-Boling Arena at Food City Center.