R&B FOUNDATION PIONEER AWARDS INDEX

  • R&B FOUNDATION PIONEER AWARDS HOME
  • IT STILL HURTS TOO MUCH TO WRITE ABOUT SLY STONE
  • -- Freddie Stone (RealAudio Interview)
  • -- Jerry Martini (RealAudio Interview)
  • -- Larry Graham/Freddie Stone Acceptance Speech (RealAudio)
  • EMOTIONS
    -- Emotions (RealAudio Interview)
  • BIG JAY MCNEELEY
    -- Big Jay McNeeley (RealAudio Interview)
  • Fontella Bass (RealAudio Interview)
  • JERRY BLAVAT
    -- Jerry Blavat (RealAudio Interview)
  • COMMENTARY: (MJ VS. PRINCE)

  • SOUL PATROL'S AT THE (2000) PIONEER AWARDS
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    Last Updated: 9/15/2006




  • SOUL-PATROL COVERS THE



    PHILLY: R&B FOUNDATION 20th ANNIVERSARY PIONEER AWARDS (9/9/2008)

    R&B FOUNDATION ANNOUNCES 2008 PIONEER AWAED WINNERS Well this event is done and I wanted to do a quick brain dump. We have tons of pictures, audio/text interviews. Kevin Amos, T.Watts and I worked our be-hinds off documenting all of this and although we are tired, we are smiling. We are smiling because this was a fantastic three days that have made me extremely proud to be a Black American.

    More often than not I find myself writing about how ashamed I am of how "mah people" treat their own culture and treat each other. However what we observed and documented at the 2008 R&B Foundation Pioneer Awards, provided a very clear picture over the past 3 days of what things could/should be like. I watched with pride as a massive, complex & multi venue event, managed by Black folks come off with few hitches.

    Another aspect to this pride that I felt was that these very same Black folks, although clearly in charge, did not forget that there are many white artists & others who stand as major contributors to the legacy of R&B music. We saw people like Teena Marie, Bob Babbitt, Dennis Coffy, Steve Cropper, Philly's own Butterball & Jerry Blavat and others get major props during the festivities as well.

    The 2008 Pioneer Awards Honorees are:

    Lifetime Achievement - CHAKA KHAN
    Individual Artist Awards - TEENA MARIE, BILL WITHERS and SUGAR PIE DESANTO
    Group Awards - KOOL & THE GANG and THE WHISPERS
    Sidemen Award - THE FUNK BROTHERS
    Legacy Award - DONNY HATHAWAY
    Leadership Award - AL BELL of STAX RECORDS

    The evening's hosts include:

    DIONNE WARWICK
    BONNIE RAITT
    JERRY BUTLER
    WAYNE BRADY

    In addtion to performances by this year's honorees and hosts, the 2008 Pioneer Awards will feature appearances by:

    WILLIAM BELL, JERRY BLAVAT, GARY US BONDS, G C CAMERON, STEVE CROPPER, VIVIAN GREEN, ANTHONY HAMILTON, MABEL JOHN, KINDRED THE FAMILY SOUL, KENNY LATTIMORE, JOHN OATES, JAGUAR WRIGHT
    BETTY WRIGHT

    Well this event is done and I wanted to do a quick brain dump. We have tons of pictures, audio/text interviews. Kevin Amos, T.Watts and I worked our be-hinds off documenting all of this and although we are tired, we are smiling. We are smiling because this was a fantastic three days that have made me extremely proud to be a Black American.

    More often than not I find myself writing about how ashamed I am of how "mah people" treat their own culture and treat each other. However what we observed and documented at the 2008 R&B Foundation Pioneer Awards, provided a very clear picture over the past 3 days of what things could/should be like. I watched with pride as a massive, complex & multi venue event, managed by Black folks come off with few hitches.

    Another aspect to this pride that I felt was that these very same Black folks, although clearly in charge, did not forget that there are many white artists & others who stand as major contributors to the legacy of R&B music. We saw people like Teena Marie, Bob Babbitt, Dennis Coffy, Steve Cropper, Philly's own Butterball & Jerry Blavat and others get major props during the festivities as well.

    Telling the story as accurately as possible is what the R&B Foundation is all about. The story they are trying to tell, is one that is as American as apple pie. And it's also an "integrated story", one that despite the divisiveness in our society over the past 8 years, is a story that seems to be blossoming in many areas in our society outside of music. In telling this story accurately, that makes the R&B Foundation one of the beacons of light that are helping us all to follow the correct path.

    As is always the case, I spent the ceremony inside of the Press Room, watching the ceremony/performances on a monitor. For the very first time in the history of my coverage over the years of this event, the press room was actually well managed, staffed and efficient in it's operation. My kudos to the organizers.

    The actual Awards ceremony/show was fantastic featuring some great individual performances and was held in one of the top performance venues in the United States (the Kimmel Center). I'm extremely biased of course and I am happy to report that our own Sugar Pie De Santo emerged from this event as the "newest rising star" of the R&B scene.

    One of the complaints that I have observed over the years in covering this event is that many folks would leave saying that somehow the R&B Pioneer Awards are too focused on being something more than one great party on one night. This is a format which emulates what the RRHOF and other similar events do. This year I am happy to report the R&B Foundation Pioneer Awards has evolved into something that is quite a bit more substantial, in scope and purpose.

    Very quietly this event has evolved from simply "just another elitist awards ceremony" into a gathering that in some ways defies description. First of all, quietly it has evolved into a multi day event, with a scope much larger than "just giving out awards", or "a reunion."

    The R&B Foundation Awards are suddenly threatening to become a "multi day event at multiple venues of true substance." In my opinion when this event finishes "growing up", it will be the single most important and forward looking event of substance and entertainment in all of Black music.

    DAY ONE:

    The Enterprise Center (Former American Bandstand Studios):

    With featured performers, Chubby Checker, Harvey Fuqua & the Fabulous Jewels, it was a day of celebration the "ancient African oral tradition" more commonly known as DOO WOP. There were many local doo wop artists who performed, plus some cameo appearances by Philadelphia legends such as Bunny Sigler.

    However the real highlight was the educational component of the day, which featured Chubby Checker, masterfully providing not only a dance lesson for a group of young dancers, but more importantly a timely lesson in human relations. The grand finale was a group rendition of "Goodnight Sweetheart Goodnight", in tribute to our friend, the late/great Pookie Hudson.

    We conducted a whole bunch of interviews here, that you will eventually hear on the site in some form.


    DAY TWO:

    30th Street Station:

    The "LOVE TRAIN" pulled into Philly from NYC filled with the likes of Jerrry Butler, Maxine Brown, Gary "US" Bonds, Sugar Pie De Santo, Cadillacs, Darlene Love, Jerry Blavat, Freddie Jackson, Baby Washington, Chuck Jackson and other dignitaries. What ensued was sort of equivalent to the press conference, held in previous years at the Pioneer Awards, where each artist gets to speak to all who are gathered along with a "meet & greet." This event lasted for about 1.5 hours.

    We conducted a whole bunch of interviews here, that you will eventually hear on the site in some form.

    Philadelphia International Records Studio:

    Rehearsals took place here and the vibe here was incredible. Some things simply can't be planned and the atmosphere that was here should be bottled and sold. It was all about the mix of people who were there; all of the artists who are going to perform, Philadelphia International Employees, the house band and the local Philadelphia "hard core" Classic Soul crowd. In other words it was a mixture of (mostly) Black people who behaved in a very cool kind of way. I can't help but feel that a big part of the vibe that was here was due to the location itself. The Philadelphia International Records Studio holds a special place in Black History and just being in that building, with the folks who were there gave me an enormous sense of "pride in ownership."

    Clef Club

    A tribute to Al Bell (& panel discussion) + a special screening of the movie "Stax Comes Home." The tribute to Al Bell was truly appreciated and moved Al Bell himself to tears. His comments were powerful & inspiring to me on a personal level and gave a hint of the knowledge that could have been potentially passed on to people who needed to gain some additional wisdom in the room. The panel discussion however, was a total waste and seemed pointless except to serve as a cheerleading session/infomercial for what used to be a great local radio station in Philly. Hopefully in the future this session will re-formatted to be a true informational session which takes full advantage of the knowledge, experience and leadership people like Al Bell, Kenny Gamble, etc. have to impart on the audience. With that being said this event at the Clef Club has the potential to become one of the most significant informational gatherings on the Black music calendar each year.
    ------

    Big up's to the city of Philadelphia for being a great host, big up's to the various venues around the city for their participation. Patricia Wilson Aden and the staff of the R&B Foundation is to be commended for "elevating their game" and turning this event into what in my opinion is clearly destined to become "The Super Bowl of Black Music." The attitude of everyone that I have encountered has been of the kind that makes me stick my chest out just a little bit more with the knowledge & pride of just what 'mah people' can accomplish, when they want to...

    Now as is my tradition in covering this event is my own version of "hits & misses" for this year's R&B Foundation Pioneer Awards. I probably have left a few names off here, if so I'll think about it and republish this in a few days.

    PEOPLE I AM PROUD OF:

    --Patty Wilson & the entire staff of the R&B Foundation, totally professional and highly competent. Something I find to be unusual at similar events

    --Jalilah Larsuel, providing competent Public Relations for the R&B Foundation (a thankless job)

    --Kenny Gamble and the PIR Family, last time out I was a bit suspicious of what might be going on. However this year these folks proved by both their actions and their words that they should be given major props. Too many situations and too many examples to name here, just know that these folks are probably the very best friends that the R&B Foundation has.

    --Al Bell... class, vision and leadership he was moved to tears

    --Sugar Pie De Santo... humility and pride

    --Kenny Latimore... the respect that he demonstrated to his wife in our conversation

    --Bill Withers... in the dictionary the word "griot" should have his picture next to the definition

    --Anthony Hamilton... the respect that he demonstrated to his wife out on the "blue carpet"

    --Chuck D... for just being Chuck, always providing context, language and purpose to the conversation

    --Jerry Butler... class, wisdom and leadership

    --Chubby Checker... for taking the time, for making the effort to educate and communicate

    --Harvey Fuqua... he is the thread that ties all of it together

    --Lalah Hathaway and Eulaulah Hathaway...they were both regal in their presence and elequent in their words

    --Brenda Holloway... brilliant singer/songwriter and even better, she's actually a nice person

    --Mabel John…. A lady who not only is a great singer, but also a person who tells it EXACTLY like it is

    --Tim Marshall... for his role in helping to manage both the press room and the blue carpet

    --Sara… a Philadelphia resident I ran into outside and later interviewed, who told me just why the legacy of R&B music was important to her and her family

    --A Whole Group of Folks I Ran Into....who traveled from places as far away as DC & Boston at the last moment to make it to the event

    --Teena Marie... respect for her mentors, respect for a community that has adopted her as one of their own. Her words are emblematic of what the R&B Foundation and it's objectives are all about. We will be posting her commentary, because everybody needs to hear it.


    PEOPLE I AM ASHAMED OF:

    --Wayne Brady... every single person, from artists, to staff to just regular folks on the streets of Philly I encountered that had any sort of contact with him over the past few days told me that they came away with a negative experience. In fact his behavior was the single most frequently mentioned topic of conversation over the past several days. The brotha has a fantastic new album, one of the very best new album releases of the year in fact that you will be soon be able to listen to at some point over the next few days via Soul-Patrol.Net Radio. However just because someone has great music, it doesn't mean that they get my respect as a person. The first time out, you give a person respect on "GP" alone, after that they get respect based on their behavior. In my observation, the R&B Foundation Awards has always been a place where I have seen some of the biggest names in entertainment, sports, politics, etc. let their hair down and just be "regular people." I have seen legends allow themselves and others to be "just folks." One great album doesn't entitle you to trample over people, who are according you all of the respect in the world. Maybe the next time out will be different, maybe he was having a bad day, or perhaps there is some health issue that isn't obvious. Or perhaps it was something else? It doesn't require any explanation whatsoever and certainly not to me. But whatever it is, hopefully the next time he will do "a 180" and turn what appears to be a nightmare into a dream.

    --Chaka Khan... an awful display of her own lack of humility and intelligence. Just because someone doesn't like your music or your performance, doesn't mean that they are a bunch of "n*ggers." Perhaps it was too easy to just say thanks for an award that is for most of it's recipients, the most important award that they will get in their careers. The words "please" and "thank you" aren't terribly difficult to pronounce or to say. Consider removing the word "n*gger" from your vocabulary and replacing it with the words "please" and "thank you", you may just find that doing so will automatically make the world a much better place to live in. She may want to consider taking a listen to the words of Teena Marie and others, study them for some further information on what to say when you have just come off stage after winning a major award.


    For now, click here to check out more on the R&B Foundation

    PHILLY: Soul-Patrol Was in the House For The 2006 R&B Foundation Pioneer Awards 2006 R&B Foundation Pioneer Awards

    Of course we were in the house for the 2006 Pioneer Awards. For the very first time the setting for this event was in Philadelphia. We congradulate all of the winners and we are quite proud of the three members of Soul-Patrol that were honored (Delfonics, Bettye Lavette & Barbara Mason).

    We spent the entire day and night in Philly for the event and as usual we have interviews and commentary (both text and audio) from the 2006 Pioneer Awards....

    --2006 R&B Foundation Press Confrence: Speeches from - Delfonics, Barbara Mason, Bettye Lavette, Chubby Checker, Katie Connelly, Kenny Gamble, Kendall Minter, Claudette Robinson, Jerry Blavat, David Nathan. Plus wrap around commentary and analysis from Bob Davis and Kevin Amos.. Listen at the following link...
    http://www.soul-patrol.net/rbf_press_conf.ram

    --Soul-Patrol's Kevin Amos interviews R&B Foundation Board Member Kenny Gamble: Economic Empowerment via the Arts, Preserving R&B, & the R&B Foundation. Listen at the following link...
    http://www.soul-patrol.net/gamble.ram

    --Soul-Patrol's Kevin Amos interviews R&B Foundation Board Member Claudette Robinson: Artist Rights, Why are the Miracles not in the RRHOF, Pre Civil Rights Conditions, & the R&B Foundation. Listen at the following link...
    http://www.soul-patrol.net/rb_claudette.ram

    Please check out some of the pictures that we took....







    I'll give you a dollar, if you can tell me what the mission of the Rhythm and Blues Foundation is?

    tick, tick, tick, tick................... TIME'S UP

    The mission of the Rhythm and Blues Foundation isn't only to have an awards ceremony...

    ...what they do is put CASH MONEY into he hands of 'R&B Pioneers' who need it for anything from medical expenses, funeral expenses or simply to get their electricity turned back on.

    btw.....ALL of the R&B Pioneer inductees also get a CA$H award to go along with their statues!

    * is it "charity"? (yes it is)
    * should that charity be needed? (no it shouldn't)
    * should WE as fans of Classic Soul support it? (yes we should)

    This is something that I would like for yall to keep in mind as you explore the links to the text and audio links to the left.

  • Start with the link entitled 2001 R&B FOUNDATION PIONEER AWARDS SUMMARY.

  • Read the article about Sly and the Family Stone and take a listen to the audio interviews with members of Sly & the Family Stone (Freddie Stone and Jerry Martini).

  • Read the article about the Emotions and listen to the audio interview with Shiela And Wanda Of The Emotions (some Badd Mama Jamas!).

  • Read the article about Big Jay Mcneely and listen to the audio interview with Big Jay Mcneely.

  • Listen to the audio interview with Fontella Bass.

  • Read the article on the legendary Philadelphia broadcaster, Jerry Blavat and listen to the audio interview with Jerry.

  • Read the commentary entitled MJ vs. Prince

    Certainly Soul-Patrol had a lot of fun and enhanced our knowledge about the rich legacy of the culture that was created by Soul music.
    This was our second year covering the R&B Foundation Pioneer Awards and we certainly hope to come back next year for a third time

    However, for me the whole experience brings into clearer focus exactly what the mission of Soul-Patrol itself should be all about.

    My sincere hope is that after taking a look at our coverage, that focus will become just as clear for you as well…

    --Bob Davis
    11/2001


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