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Meet Cauthen Vaughn: Entrepreneur, CEO, Manager + A&R



Meet Cauthen Vaughn: A multi-faceted entrepreneur, CEO, manager, A&R, who strives for the excellence, perseverance and love of his craft.

Born in Sacramento, California on November 5, 1979, Cauthen began pursuing a career in the entertainment and business arenas as early as his teen years. In pursuit of his dream and driven by passion for film, television and music — the Cali-native dedicates his life’s work to perfecting the culture.

Working with many leading contributors in the entertainment industry, Cauthen continues to surpass the goals he has set for himself. In addition to running his own management company and label, Cauthen continues to support the underprivileged through his volunteer and donation efforts.

After graduating high school, Cauthen relocated from the West-Coast to the South of the Country. Specifically to the ATL — to realize his ‘middle-school’ dream of attending Morehouse College (Atlanta, Georgia). While attending Morehouse College as a business major, he also nurtured his interests in acting, modeling, songwriting, and theatre.

Upon graduation, Cauthen immersed himself in both the fields of entertainment and corporate business. At that time, he wisely chose to remain in Atlanta to capitalize on the alumni network that naturally developed around him.

By 2016, Cauthen decided to relocate to the Big Apple. (NYC). That’s when he started his journey as an A&R, joining one of the major labels of the world, Universal Music Group (UMG). Just two years later, he worked with another powerhouse, Def Jam, fully transitioning to the A&R role.

To further expand his A&R services, Cauthen started his own management company in 2019, WeR1 Productions, located in Los Angeles. He was then named ‘Label Head‘ of 9th Insight Group, which was founded in 2021.

Vaughn is easily considered a household name within the industry thus far, and it’s simply just the beginning of what he has planned. Luckily, we recently got the chance to chop it up with Cauthen — for a dope, in-depth conversation.

We spoke on his time at UMG, his transition to Def Jam, and some of his inspirations. He also names a few of his favorite books, his thoughts on the industry today, and even gives some quick advice for up-and-coming artists.

Read about it all below and stay connected with Cauthen via social media: @cauthenvaughn.

You run your own management and label company — how did that come about?

“Management company came about first due to the need of creating an LLC for business purposes, as demand grew for my attention musically. The Label was created while working in the music business in NY. 9th Insight was created when I realized I was bringing to the table much more than just management for artists.”

How was the transition from growing up in Sunny California — to the down South of Atlanta?

“I loved it. Opposite side of the country, new culture, new people and new surroundings. I was unsure for a couple of hours once I first arrived but never had a doubt after.”

What made you decide to stay in Atlanta after graduation?

“Coming from Sacramento, CA to Atlanta, GA was a huge difference in my life. I grew to love Atlanta as my second home and had numerous benefits of staying instead of returning to Sacramento. Opportunities, relationships, and business are some of the reasons I decided to stay.”

How was your time at Universal Music Group as an A&R?

“Priceless. What I learned and was able to apply to my life can’t be described. Great times along with life lessons that helped mold me into the person I am today.”

In 2018, you then went from UMG to Def Jam — why the transition — and was it much different?

“The transition from UMG to Def Jam was more of a group transition. The team I was with transitioned as a whole and I couldn’t have been more excited about it. This was when Paul Rosenberg (Eminem’s manager) took the lead. Def Jam is arguably the greatest label in Hip Hop history and I was a part of that. The difference came from dealing with more people in different departments. The goals for me were the same.”

You’re very into reading. What are some of your favorite books?

“Well, I wouldn’t say very much. But I do enjoy reading something I learn from no matter what it is. Some of my favorites would be Originals by Adam Grant and Outliers by Malcom Gladwell.”

Who / what are some of your inspirations?

“I’ve been asked this question before and it’s hard for me to pinpoint one thing or person at a time because generally I’ve been inspired by many things around me and by people that have contributed something I was fond of. For example one of my first inspirations was Michael Jordan because of my love for basketball. So you can imagine from artist to activist, to the world as a whole how long that list really is.”

How do you like your role as an A&R?

“I’m naturally a A&R, meaning it’s a part of who I am. I’m an A&R in my management role and in my label. Fun fact, I was working with a reputable writer before I moved to NY and while we were working on a song, I would say things that made him stop and say you are a A&R. At the time I didn’t know what an A&R was so he had to explain it to me.”

What are your thoughts on the music business today?

“My thoughts on the music business today is to make the most of your situation as it relates to you. I’m not going to downplay the majors or uplift the indies and visa-versa .. because it all depends on what’s best for you and your situation. Music will continue to thrive and we will need to adapt around it.”

Before we go .. can you give some quick advice for an upcoming artist today?

“I would say try to stay true to yourself. If you can’t then you can’t because a lot of people copy others or take from others and apply it to themselves. I’ve seen that work for some, we all do it just don’t over do it. Keep your individuality as much as possible. And like Polow da Don once told me, “Make sure that s*** hot.”

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This past weekend at San Antonio venue Paper Tiger, Jordi from Eagle Lake, Texas won the Red Bull Batalla San Antonio Qualifier, beating out 15 others to earn not only bragging rights, but automatic entry to compete at the National Final in Miami in October. Red Bull Batalla is the largest Spanish-language freestyle rap battle in the world, and this marks the 2nd time the26-year-old winner qualifies for the National Final.  

As the first U.S. qualifier event of the 2024 season, over 1,100 fans rallied to support MCs from the local Texas region and beyond. In a thrilling final battle, Jordi squared up against local Texas MCCuban, igniting the crowd’s excitement to see which hometown freestyler would take the trophy. Though Jordi takes first place, Cuban will also advance to the National Final along with runners up Boss fromLA and Yenky One, a former World Final qualifier who resides in Utah. Houston rapper Bo Bundy closed out the event with a performance followed by Mexico’s Tornillo who serenaded the crowd with hits like “Morena,” “Un Die Todo Se Termina,” and a new unreleased track. 

All eyes now shift to New York City where Red Bull Batalla will hold its first titled event in the Big Apple on July 13th with the second and final Red Bull Batalla U.S. qualifier event of the season. A new cast of 16 MCs will prove themselves for the ultimate prize – a chance to represent the U.S. on the world’s biggest stage for freestyle battle rap at the sold-out International Final at the WiZink Center in Madrid, Spain in November. 

For photos and assets from the Red Bull Batalla San Antonio Qualifier visit Red Bull Content Pool. For fans looking to catch the action, the full event replay can be streamed across Red Bull Batalla social channels including Twitch tomorrow, April 23 at 4pm PT / 7pm ET.

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Artist To Watch

Jursula’s Journey to ‘I’m Running Away’ – A Transformative Rendition of Kanye West’s ‘Runaway’



In the realm of music, inspiration often strikes in the most unexpected places, weaving a narrative that resonates deeply with both the artist and their audience. For Jursula, the journey to creating “I’m Running Away,” a reimagined rendition of Kanye West’s “Runaway,” was nothing short of transformative, fueled by a series of serendipitous encounters and personal revelations.

 The genesis of “I’m Running Away” can be traced back to a chance encounter at an airport, where Jursula found herself drawn to the haunting melody of a piano rendition of Kanye West’s iconic track. As she approached the musician, little did she know that this moment would mark the beginning of a profound musical odyssey.

 “I first consciously heard it on my way from Africa to LA,” Jursula recalls, reflecting on the pivotal moment that sparked her creative journey. “Someone was keying it into a piano at the Airport in New Jersey as I was going to get to my flight. I stopped to ask him what he was playing, and he told me it was a Kanye West song.”

 For Jursula, who had always admired Kanye’s artistry, hearing the reimagined rendition of “Runaway” was nothing short of revelatory. “I thought Kanye was an out-of-this-world genius before, but this song instantly made me see him on a whole new untouchable God level as he claims to be,” she shares, highlighting the profound impact of the music on her perception of the artist.

 However, the journey from Africa to America took an unexpected turn when Jursula was informed that her flight was bound for the Dominican Republic instead of her intended destination, LAX. Despite the setback, she found solace in the vibrant atmosphere of the airport, indulging in the simple pleasures of a classic American burger amid the chaos of travel.

 It was amidst this backdrop of uncertainty and introspection that Jursula found herself drawn to the familiar strains of Kanye’s “Runaway,” echoing through the corridors of the airport. “Something in me just knew, it was something raw,” she recalls, recounting the moment she decided to freestyle over the instrumental, capturing the raw emotions of her journey in a spontaneous burst of creativity.

 As she poured her heart out in the impromptu freestyle, Jursula found herself grappling with a tumultuous mix of emotions, from the pain of a broken relationship to the exhilaration of embarking on a new chapter in her life. “I was crying both of sadness and joy during the freestyle to the point I didn’t even know what I was saying anymore,” she admits, reflecting on the cathartic release of expression.

 For Jursula, “I’m Running Away” became more than just a song; it was a testament to resilience, empowerment, and self-discovery. “It was such a release song for me. I felt ascended, empowered, and free to not needing anyone,” she shares, embracing her newfound independence with unwavering determination.

 As she continues to navigate the complexities of the music industry, Jursula remains steadfast in her commitment to authenticity and self-expression. “I want to do crazy things like Michael Jackson did, go to India to learn balance, yoga for performances,” she reveals, highlighting her insatiable hunger for growth and exploration.

 With “I’m Running Away,” Jursula invites listeners into a world of vulnerability and strength, where every note serves as a testament to the transformative power of music. As she blazes a trail of her own, Jursula’s journey is a reminder that inspiration can be found in the most unexpected places, shaping the course of our lives in ways we never imagined possible.

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Artist To Watch

BraveSoull Arrives With An AfroBeats Fusion “Hate Me Now”



In the colorful and ever-changing world of Afrobeats, a genre-hopping artist emerges with a single that not only captures the essence of the movement but also reinvents it, offering listeners a musical experience that knows no boundaries. BraveSoull and his resonating new release, “Hate Me Now,” brings tradition and innovation together.

Unveiling the Artistry of “Hate Me Now”

Since “Hate Me Now” made its seismic arrival, the effects are still being felt. The record, which is accompanied by a visually stunning music video, has shed new light on the season, infusing the scene with a dynamic blend of Afro rhythms and powerful, trap-inspired sounds that are nothing short of captivating.

BraveSoull, the trailblazing artist behind this amazing audio, is no stranger to the spotlight. His earlier works were defined by an unwavering creative vision, and “Hate Me Now” builds on that tradition with an extra layer of grit and glory. It displays the artist’s artistic development and capacity to both celebrate and transcend the genre he represents.

The Fusion of Past and Present

At its core, “Hate Me Now” is a modern take on Nas’ legendary hit of the same name, a 90s Hip-Hop track that features Puff Daddy which resonated deeply with a generation and is now given fresh life in a universe of Afrobeats by BraveSoull. This blend of past and present is more than just an homage; it is a revamping that pays homage to its origins while boldly venturing into unexplored territory.

In fact, the trendy track’s throbbing tempo, underlined by hard-hitting percussion and complex instrumental layers, sets the setting for BraveSoull’s lyrical talent. His delivery is nothing short of powerful, with words that pierce the air like a hot blade, delivering a message of strength and resistance. The song, which is both powerfully raw and precisely composed, addresses individuals who have been doubted and bruised by life’s storms, resonating with universal themes of empowerment and self-belief.

For a new generation looking for a voice that expresses their struggles and goals, BraveSoull stands up to the plate with a signature sound all of his own. His refusal to compromise, unwavering pursuit of authenticity, and dedication to his craft are evident in every note, making “Hate Me Now” an essential addition to any playlist.

In an age when mass production and commercial formulas frequently eclipse the essence of art, BraveSoull’s solid spirit is a breath of fresh air. His music serves as a reminder that, beyond the layers of production and performance, a song’s heartbeat is its soul, and “Hate Me Now” has plenty of it. For now, get familiar with this trailblazing talent here at 4Sho Magazine! Lastly, let us know your thoughts in the comments!



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