“Lightning in a bottle”…Is the term that best describes hip hop artist Caktuz [pronounced Cactus]. Self dubbed ‘The Carolina Blues Traveler” Cak has been tearing down stages and walls from the USA to the UK, pushing his infectious brand of music & art on to the world. An intense performer and profound lyricist, his music is an authentic original hip hop sound that blends afro-punk, alternative soul, and trunk rattling street music genres into a signature sound that is profoundly ‘Caktuz’.
After serving an 8 year prison stint for a crime he did not commit, Caktuz left his High Point, NC home for NYC and soon became a rising indie artist under his own AMAS Multi-Media label, having worked with such artists as Bilal, dead prez, Boot Camp Clik, SA-RA, Kardinal Offishall, The Dey, Brand Nubian, M.O.P., Young Guru, Michael K Williams , T.O.B., Black Bo (TCB), Lo (Backyard Band), Killa Cal (Rare Essence), & many more.
Not just a musician, but an award winning graphic illustrator/designer, working with virtually all the top designers, such as Ecko, Apple Bottoms, Parish, Timberland, Rocawear, Shady Ltd. Having laced celebs such as Wendy Williams, Queen Latifah, & Chris Brown with his work he has undeniably become heavily sought after by Hollywood. Many corporate clients, such as Smirnoff, DC Comics, TBS, Pepsi, Wal-Mart, have called on Caktuz by name. Keeping various pots cooking lead to gracing the Broadway stage with the legendary Melvin Van Peebles, as the closing act to his award winning play ‘ Aint Supposed To Die A Natural Death’. The 2 would begin a bond that gave way to Cak illustrating the father of Blaxploitation cinema’s graphic novel; “Confessions Of A Ex-Dufus Itchy Footed Mutha” (Akashic Books).
Caktuz shut down stages abroad on tour headlining beside some of Europe’s biggest talents & emerging acts, such as Akala, Bashy, DJ SpyKatcha, Charlie Sloth, Kof, Esco Williams, & Nikki Blaze, for Liverpool Hip Hop Week, Soundcity, & the HUB Festival (the UK’s largest free music festival). Touring would helped to stamp his name and sound through various parts of England, Amsterdam, & Paris.
A Carolina blues man by blood, his 1st album 2 Hevi 4 Heaven, set Caktuz’s place in the industry as an openly experimental artist, weaving live performance art into his stage shows. The innovative showmanship brought attention to his surreal digital mixtape campaigns (packaging his music with art, video & even a virtual nightclub in secondlife.com), as well as his controversial sophomore album GOD*Z PORNO. The lead single, Supahbaaddddd! from GOD*Z PORNO would later catch the ear of Billy Danze, (one half of the legendary hip hop duo M.O.P.), which lead to signing Caktuz to his We Build Hits/SONY Red label in 2013.
After building and managing a successful internet radio station with the lifestyle brand WheatBread, his hustle and all around charisma eventually landed him into the acting spotlight. An impressive method actor, Caktuz has appeared in a number of film and web television efforts, including his mentor Melvin Van Peebles’ film Confessions ofA ex-Doofus Ithcy Footed Mutha, The Eddie Black Story (formerly tittled Deceptz), and his self produced web series ThatsWhatsUp! for Radio One
Cak & his band, The Dopesh!te, made their big break on VH1’s hip hop drama series, The Breaks, as a go go band paying homage to D.C’s own legendary Junkyard Band (ep. #106 “Runaway”) with a cover of their hit “Sardines”. Adapted from the studio’s own original hip-hop movie of the same name in 2016, the series premiere attracted 2.6 million viewers.
After 2 UK tours, 3 indie albums, a list of features & appearances, and now a handful of acting and director credits – Caktuz is set to take the world on his own terms.
Too long overlooked and denied, the future is endless for Caktuz & The Dopesh!te, whom also appear in Cak’s directorial debut W A N D E R L U S T: A Musical Noir, and are credited for scoring the film. The SH!TEZ are a fraternity of the wild ones left behind too long, a hail to the mustang kids untamed.