BLACKstreet To Honor R&B Pioneers

Jan. 30 [8:00 EST] -- Teddy Riley and his latest vocal group, BLACKstreet (still lodged firmly in the "Billboard" top 10 with their hit single, "No Diggity") will be in New York City on February 27, to honor some classic hitmakers of the past at the eighth annual Rhythm & Blues Foundation "Pioneer Awards" ceremony.

The Rhythm & Blues Foundation provides services and money to aging stars who (perhaps through some innocent oversight on the part of their record companies) never entirely got paid by the executives they helped to enrich.

Tony Rich, Montell Jordan, and T.L.C.'s T-Boz will also be on hand next month, to honor Gary "U.S." Bonds, who in the early 60s recorded a series of party anthems that still sound like nothing else recorded since. The ceremony will also honor the wonderful blues-and-country switch-hitter Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown, guitarists little Milton and Phil Upchurch, Smokey Robinson and the Miracles, and Chicago singer Gene Chandler (the man who

made "The Duke Of Earl").

After appearing at the Rhythm & Blues Foundation induction, BLACKstreet will head back out on the road in the group's new tour bus, which has it's own little studio built in for those roadside moments when musical inspiration strikes.