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The Four: Battle for Stardom

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Sean Combs

Sean “Diddy” Combs, AKA Puff Daddy, started his career as the director of A&R at Uptown Records, where he was integral in launching the careers of Mary J. Blige and Jodeci. He later started his own label, Bad Boy Records, which has fostered talent that includes Mariah Carey, Method Man, Boyz II Men, Lil’ Kim and more. Combs’ solo music career began in 1997 with his first single, “Can’t Nobody Hold Me Down,” which shot to No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100, quickly followed by a No. 1 debut album that has gone Platinum seven times. Over the course of his career, he has earned three Grammy Awards and ASCAP’s Songwriter of the Year honor. Combs also has become an established actor and executive producer in both film and television. He starred in the 2008 telefilm “A Raisin in the Sun,” for which he won an NAACP Award for Best Actor; he was an executive producer and featured personality on the 2002 unscripted music series “Making the Band 2”; and he executive-produced the Academy Award-winning documentary “Undefeated” and the Academy Award-nominated “Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom.” Combs continues to apply the same drive and entrepreneurial spirit to his philanthropic work and political activism, most recently leading the response to the water crisis in Flint, MI, by pledging one million bottles of his AQUAhydrate water, along with long-term assistance to the area. He has supported organizations including the National Foundation for Teaching Entrepreneurship (NFTE), the Boys & Girls Club and others that create opportunities for young people. He also has served on the board of the Hip Hop Action Network and rallied millions of young people to register to vote during the 2008 election, through his Vote or Die project.