Singer-songwriter Robert Lee Castleman wanted to find a record label that believed in who he was.
"I wanted a label that gave me complete artistic control," Castleman said during a phone call on the road somewhere near Billings, Mont. "I've had my share of rejection, and I don't really pay any attention to it. I just wanted to be able to make my own music."
Castleman will play the Red Butte Garden on Tuesday, Aug. 29. He is the opening musical guest for Alison Krauss & Union Station. Doors, so to speak, open at 6 p.m., and the show begins at 7 p.m.
Tickets are available at all Ticketmaster outlets in Fred Meyer stores or all Graywhale CD exchanges. Tickets can also be purchased online at www.ticketmaster.com or by calling 801-325-SEAT.
About a year ago, Castleman found a record label that respected him as an artist, he said.
"I was at Alison Krauss' birthday party and happened to play a few songs," he said.
Well, Krauss immediately called Rounder Records chief Ken Irwin, and a deal was born.
"I was very lucky to have been signed with Rounder and have the label behind me," Castleman said. "I finally found a company that believed in me."
Work on his debut album, "Crazy as Me," started almost immediately.
"I worked with Pat Bergeson (Krauss' husband) on this album, and I am very happy how it turned out," said Castleman, who cited Tex Ritter, the Beatles and Willie Nelson as some of his major musical influences. "It was very rewarding to know that the album was done the way I wanted it done."
Another reward for Castleman is the reaction he's getting at each of his shows, especially the ones where he opens for Krauss.
"I've been getting some great response for my solo sets and the ones I do with Alison," he said. "I had one experience when a woman came up to me after the show and told me that I had made her cry.
"That was a great feeling," he said. "I want my music to make people cry, laugh. I just want them to feel something."
Castleman started signing when he was 8 years old.
"Back then I couldn't say I actually had a purpose for my music," he said with a chuckle. "When I got into my 20s, I just wanted to be rock star. But things come down to plain reality. And I was plain happy to set my sights on recording records. And that's what I'm doing now.
"What I would like to see happen in the future is to keep writing music," he said. "I want to keep getting better at writing music and make records. And I'd like to see those songs get passed down from generation to generation."