Coran Capshaw Honored
For Americans, the last year has been a turbulent one, to say the least. Within the music industry, it has been a year marked by tragic and untimely deaths. For many people, celebrations have been the last thing on their minds.
However, living up to its name, the annual “Spirit of Life” award dinner from the City of Hope has provided some much-needed unity and hope. This year’s event, honoring Coran Capshaw, the founder of Red Light Management, continued the event’s proud tradition of bringing the disparate forces within the record business together for a noble cause.
This year, the event managed to bring in a cool $4.8 million, which was added to the $113 million total raised by the Music, Film, and Entertainment Industry Group over its four and a half decades’ worth of history.
While this year’s event was held in honor of Coran Capshaw, he was far from the only industry figure to receive special mention. One conspicuous absence from this year’s event was Paradigm talent agent Chip Hooper, who tragically lost his battle with neuroendocrine cancer in March of 2016. He was given special mention at this year’s event by Phish’s Trey Anastasio, who lost his own sister to the same disease and played a short acoustic set towards the end of the evening.
Capshaw himself also pledged a donation of half a million dollars to the Chip Hooper Memorial Fund, which conducts research into neuroendocrine cancer, and the possible treatments for it.
“Music, Hope & Healing”
Capshaw is a familiar figure to those in the industry, but he is known for preferring a low-key, behind-the-scenes approach. Not usually one to seek out the spotlight, he decided to step forward this year in memory of his late friend Chip Hooper, so that he could assist the City of Hope in achieving its stated mission of “Music, Hope & Healing”.
In his speech, Capshaw remarked on how welcome it was to see all the different sides of the music industry coming together for a good cause and a very successful night of fundraising.
One recurring theme in the comments made by attendees at this year’s event was how much they noticed and mourned Chip Hooper’s absence. A truly larger-than-life figure, many of the performers that evening paid particular homage to Hooper, and he received a number of dedications from performing artists.
The City of Hope Awards continues to be a shining example of the kind of good that the music industry is able to achieve when it manages to bring all the different corners of the industry together. All too often, at events where music executives are rubbing shoulders with talent agents and musicians, the focus is on how they can generate the most money for corporate interests. This year, the focus was on raising as much wealth as possible to put towards a very noble cause. Despite the absence of Chip Hooper at this year’s event, it was a night of celebration and, of course, a night of music, hope, and healing.