CHAMPAIGN — It’s a dream for any artist to perform a set in a crowded arena packed with family and friends.

Local hip-hop duo Trouble Chasin’ will realize that dream Saturday as Champaign natives Dontiel Allison and Chase Scott open for Ludacris at State Farm Center.

“I’m nervous, because when I was 10 years old in my room with posters on the wall, it was a lot of him,” Scott said. “I loved his first four albums religiously. When I listened to them, I memorized them, like I hit his flow.”

Allison was influenced by the Champaign-born chart-topper just as much, if not more so.

“I studied Ludacris a lot as a kid,” Allison said. “He was one of the first rappers that I ever heard and was like, ‘Oh, man, like, I love this. Like, what is this?’ Because it didn’t sound like anybody else. He’s always sounded like him.”

Allison — who performs as Sandman Slimm — and Scott — a.k.a. Chase Baby — are anything but newcomers to Champaign’s music scene. Allison graduated from Champaign Central in 2007 and Scott from Centennial the following year.

They performed independently back then before Allison moved to Carbondale for a year to attend Southern Illinois University. When he moved back, Scott’s name was beginning to trend in local circles.

Soon they began performing together and Trouble Chasin’ was born, the name coming from a combination of the duo’s stage names at the time.

They’ve appeared on countless bills as individuals and together for over a decade. Tuesday marked the release of “Aquarigo,” the group’s third full-length album with lead single “10 & 2.”

”We’ve done a lot of growing since we started Trouble Chasin’, and the music has grown a lot,” Scott said. “If you listen to the first album, it’s more of like a collection of high-energy songs that kinda encapsulated the moment that we were in when we were in the studio. This newest album is more about growth, and it’s very linear, very intentional.”

Allison and Scott are accustomed to opening for big names. They’ve appeared alongside acts such as Machine Gun Kelly, Chance the Rapper and Montana of 300.

Relationships are paramount in the music industry, especially within a scene as tight-knit as Champaign-Urbana’s. They’ve shared the wealth with a local scene that is as supportive as it is deep.

“It’s not as consistent as it sounds because you don’t want to oversaturate yourself,” Scott said. “When all these huge acts come to town, you don’t want to feel entitled. The scene is really vast to where I can have a huge gig in September and somebody else could have one in October and we don’t feel like we’re stepping on each other’s toes.”

Their experience and standing within the scene helped them land a spot on Saturday’s bill, which also includes Seattle-based artist Charlieonafriday.

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When everything started coming together — a process the group credits local musician and booker Mike Ingram for helping with — they made sure to answer every call and text.

“Even the ones that are trying to remind you about your car’s extended warranty,” Scott said with a smile. “It’s just hard work. It’s luck, it’s preparation, it’s being in the right place at the right time and having the right people on your side.”

The concert is set to cap off University of Illinois homecoming week and serves as a fitting time for the duo to make their debut at State Farm Center.

Ludacris is among a handful of nationally prominent artists to claim roots in the area.

”He had to live here before he went to Atlanta to make the music that he made,” Scott said.

“That’s why he sounded unique, because he has roots here,” Allison agreed. “I feel like this is a good melting pot, so like you get a good taste of everything. And I feel like he had to kind of absorb that, and then (take) it down there and pick up the Southern flavor with it. And there you have Ludacris.”

Naturally, Allison and Scott agree that there are some nerves involved with such a big show. Fans can expect them to translate into added animation, as always.

“It converts directly into energy,” Scott said. “The experience helps a lot, but I’ve always felt nervous before a set. I haven’t gotten so comfortable into it to where I feel like I’m on autopilot.”

Opening acts are seldom given the pomp and circumstance afforded to headliners, often performing a shorter setlist at a quieter volume.

Allison and Scott will work around that by bringing plenty of vigor to the stage.

“We’ve done countless shows together now at this point, like I don’t even want to try to think about how many we’ve done together,” Allison said. “We’ve done enough to be able to realize what of our songs work really well live. So we can kind of just take our memory of that, put together a 20-minute (set) that’s going to go crazy and then hopefully walk off that stage to some loud noises, loud cheers.”

Plenty of emotions will release when those cheers cap off a busy week that follows more than a decade of hard work.

“I’m gonna cry before,” Scott said lightheartedly, with Allison agreeing that would be the challenge for him as well. “The fact that we’re even about to be on this stage, I’ve watched so many concerts in that building (including two of his concerts) … I keep thinking to myself since the announcement, I’ve been thinking to myself like, man, I’m about to feel when I walk out there.”

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