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All photos: Kevin Hulse

Hip-Hop Summit Action Network (HSAN) along with PHILANTHROPIK presented the HIP-HOP INAUGURAL BALL II last Sunday in celebration of the Hip-Hop community’s role in the 2012 Election and promoting political awareness.

The brainchild of event chairs Russell Simmons and Zach McDaniels, the Hip-Hop Inaugural Ball hosted 2 Chainz, John Legend, Eva Longoria, Swizz Beatz, Pharrell Williams, Jadakiss, Brandy, LOS, Tank, Lance Gross, 9th Wonder and Raheem DeVaughn and more.

The highly anticipated evening promised exclusive performances, reunions, unbelievable collaborations and great music from legendary artists including Hip-Hop DJ D-Nice, and Hip-Hop Icon Doug E. Fresh and also awarded and recognizde those artists and organizations that have impacted and influenced the hip-hop and youth communities to be active, politically and socially.

A special treat: hip-hop violinist Damien Escobar from the group Nuttin but Stringz (America’s Got Talent) performed, as well as Wayne Brady and Meek Mill, Marsha Ambrosius. Charles “ROC” Dutton and Jadakiss gave audiences a sneak peak at their new movie “Must Be the Music.”

Lifetime Achievement honoree MC Lyte was honored with a special tribute performance by fellow ladies of hip-hop Yo-Yo, Smooth and Lil Mama. The Human Beat Box, hip-hop legend Doug E. Fresh also received a Lifetime Achievement award.

This year, special acknowledgement was made in recognition of the role the Hispanic/Latina hip-hop community played in galvanizing large numbers of Hispanics to vote by honoring VOTO LATINO. Actress Rosario Dawson accepted an award on behalf of Voto Latino, the non-partisan organization she co-founded to bring new and diverse voices into the political process by engaging youth, media, technology and celebrities to promote positive change.

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