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Getting into the ‘Spirit’

Ground zero for the music business was a huge tent behind the Century Plaza Hotel & Towers Wednesday night where 1,500 of the industry’s players attended the City of Hope’s 24th annual Spirit of Life dinner gala.

The charity’s music and entertainment industry arm honored LaFace Records co-founders Antonio (L.A.) Reid and Kenneth (Babyface) Edmonds for their personal, professional and philanthropic achievements. More than $3 million was raised during the $500 per plate gathering.

Many of the industry’s top chieftains, including Universal’s Doug Morris and Mel Lewinter, BMG’s Strauss Zelnick, Arista’s Clive Davis and Sony’s Polly Anthony, turned out to honor the duo.

Shaquille O’Neal, Sean (Puffy) Combs, Natalie Cole, Az Yet, Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis were also among the celebs supporting the pair.

“Tonight, we’re not competing for market share,” Reid told the crowd. “We’ve all come together to save lives.”

LaFace artist Toni Braxton was among the performers, along with newcomers Usher and Sam Salter.

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