Organisers of a Little Richard concert scheduled to take place in the singer's hometown of Macon, Georgia, on Saturday (08OCT05) are struggling to find willing sponsors.

Macon Mayor JACK ELLIS, who announced the concert on Friday (30SEP05), has asked local business leaders - including the Greater Macon Chamber of Commerce - to pick up the estimated $75,000 (GBP41,600) tab for the event.

But business leaders say they haven't been given enough time to come up with the money.

RON WILDMAN, a city spokesman, says the mayor is disappointed that the business groups aren't "stepping up to the plate", explaining, "They've been using Little Richard now for several years to promote Macon and he's not charged them one dime."

Pictures of Little Richard, real name RICHARD PENNIMAN, appear on billboards promoting Macon and a recording of his voice greets callers at the convention and visitor's bureau. There are also plans to erect a statue for the star in front of a local theatre.

The mayor now plans to turn to local residents and businesses to pay for the show.