Today we’d like to introduce you to Otha Davis III.
Thanks for sharing your story with us Otha. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
Most know me by my artist & company name, Vakseen. I’m a visual artist, curator, music producer, songwriter, music executive, and I also manage talent.
I was born an artist so I’ve been into the arts for as long as I can remember. I was always drawing and doodling from a young age. I did art in high school but never really took any classes so I’m fully self-taught.
Back when I graduated high school in ‘97, the scene was much different so I didn’t really see myself making a career out of being a visual artist. Luckily for me I was bitten by the music bug in high school and that really took over my life and focus. After I graduated high school, I got much more serious with music and decided to start pursuing a career as a rap artist & producer.
I grew up in Jacksonville, Florida where the entertainment scene was/is pretty nonexistent so after 2 years of college at FAMU and years of developing artists, I moved to South Florida to better my chances. Aside from being a musician myself, I always handled my group’s business so I knew I wanted to be involved with the music business as well. Shortly after moving, I had an opportunity to intern at a very successful record label (Slip N Slide Records) and I jumped at the chance. Keep in mind, all this time I was focused on music and I wasn’t pursuing art whatsoever. I’d be sketching and doodling at my part-time job and even ended up doing the album cover for my group, but I wasn’t pursuing art seriously. So I got into the music business with that internship and my career took off very quickly. Ironically, I had less time for my creative endeavors as I was more focused on the label’s artists.
I accomplished a lot of amazing things at the label. As an A&R and Product Manager, I profitably contributed towards the label’s success with over 20 million records sold. I successfully managed multiple marketing campaigns and also served as a key member of the A&R team behind projects from Platinum and Gold selling artists (Rick Ross, Plies, Trina, Jagged Edge and Trick Daddy). All of this was great but at a certain point I felt like I had reached my ceiling at the label and in Miami. I just felt it was time to take what I was doing to another level and I needed that to happen in a new city. I was actually set on moving to New York but my girlfriend at the time suggested LA, and I was open to it. We made a trip out and on 1 April 2011, we moved there officially.
Once I moved to LA and stopped working for a label, my time freed up completely. There is an immense creative energy here in LA that you can’t really explain; it’s just here. I think it’s all the creative minds that come here to make it. So with the additional time and that abundant energy, January 1, 2012 I decided that I would buckle down and pursue an art career. I had my first gallery exhibition that next month and that affirmation confirmed this was my path. My artist career really took on a life of its own after that.
Since that decision in 2012, I’ve been blessed to show in some of the top galleries in the country, my art has been featured in over 100 different magazines and I’m slowly building my brand as an artist to keep your eyes on.
Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
Smooth? Lol. I wish! I’m pretty sure challenges are the biggest part of any journey, especially creative ones. Considering the fact that I’m a creator working in music and art and I also represent other creators, I feel like I’ve experienced some of every struggle there is. Off top, a few of my “favorites” include: the daily challenge of finding your place in the creative world, finding your voice and then finding people that connect with it, maintaining creative inspiration, building an audience, getting your name/brand out to the public, making a living from your craft, developing and nourishing key relationships and maintaining sanity through it all. I’m pretty sure we could write a full article on the challenges alone lol.
Please tell us about Vakseen.
We’re an LA-based entertainment company that bridges the gap between major brands and amazing talent. The company’s goal has been “being the cure” for the entertainment industry’s ailments via specializing in A&R management, visual art, music production, songwriting and artist development. I take pride in representing the next generation of superstar producers & songwriters and I can easily say I’m most proud of the fact that I’ve made a career out of helping others achieve their dreams. I’ve helped almost all of my clients get their first major check, placements, hit records, platinum plaques and a number of other amazing accomplishments. I think my passion and dedication easily set me apart from others. I don’t know too many that love what they’re doing and will go through the depths of hell for others. LOL.
If you had to go back in time and start over, would you have done anything differently?
I love my journey and I wouldn’t be myself without every second of it….so nothing.
- $50 for a 30 min initial A&R Consultation
- $80 for a 1 hr initial A&R Consultation
- Website: Vakseen.com
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: Instagram.com/Vakseen
- Facebook: Facebook.com/Vakseen
- Twitter: Twitter.com/Vakseen
- Other: VakseenArt.com