One time Prince drummer SHEILA E is uniting alumni of the singer's backing bands for a Los Angeles benefit concert - and hopes the PURPLE RAIN star will put in an appearance.

Scary Movie babe Carmen Electra, who was discovered and named by the purple-suited one in 1991, will host the event.

Sheila, now a member of Ringo Starr's ALL STARR BAND, promises, "It's going to be all the Prince band members from all the bands, together, for one night only. It's never been done before. It's fabulous because they haven't played together as a band in 20 years."

Names who have already agreed to take part include guitarist WENDY MELOVIN, keyboardist LISA COLEMAN, keyboardist MATT FINK, drummer BOBBY Z, saxophonist ERIC LEEDS, singer SUSANNAH MELOVIN, percussionist Jerome Benton and singer and keyboardist PAUL PETERSON.

And Sheila is hopeful SIGN O' THE TIMES mastermind Prince will also agree to perform.

She says, "There's no pressure on him, but we'd like for him to come. He's why we're doing this, because he started all of it."

The concert will be held at either the LOS ANGELES FORUM or the UNIVERSAL AMPHITHEATRE on 13 or 15 December (03), and proceeds will go towards the creation of the COMPASSION CARE CENTRE for mistreated children.

Sheila, who was abused as a child and has donated drum kits to foster homes in the past, explains, "We're going to use music as a therapy for the children. A lot the kids have been abused so severely they have not been able to speak, and since they've had the drums, they're talking."

28/07/2003 17:31