Carmen Electra Remembers Prince: ‘He Gave Me My Name’

Carmen Electra is in mourning over the death of her mentor, Prince.

Like the rest of the world, the singer and actress, who met Prince in 1991 and changed her name from Tara Leigh Patrick to Carmen Electra at the “Purple Rain” crooner’s suggestion, was shocked to learn that the music legend passed away on Thursday (Apr. 21, 2016) at the age of 57.

“I was so shocked and heartbroken to hear about the loss of my mentor, Prince,” the 44-year-old told Us Weekly. “The world has lost a truly incredible spirit and musical genius. What a blessing it is to be one of the chosen ones who had the chance to work so closely with him. He gave me my name, he believed in me, and he has inspired an entire generation. I will always love him. … ‘Sometimes it Snows in April.'”

Electra was first introduced to Prince at 18 when he was forming an all-girl music group. Although she wasn’t chosen, Prince nonetheless signed her to his Paisley Park Records.

“I received a call from Prince saying I think you should be your own artist and not back up anyone else. I’m going to write you a song and if you like it, you can record it,” she said in an OWN special in 2014. “The name of the song was ‘Carmen on Top.’ My name is Tara, so I was confused. I loved the song. I loved it, but he said, ‘You’re not a Tara. You’re not Tara. You’re Carmen.'”

Prince was said to have briefly dated Electra during in the early 90s while the songstress was working on her 1993 self-titled album.

As previously reported, Prince was found unresponsive in an elevator at his Paisley Park home on Thursday morning. Emergency responders unsuccessfully performed CPR and he was pronounced dead on the scene.

The cultural icon reportedly overdosed on Percocet, a painkiller drug, just days before his death. Paramedics had to administer a “save shot” after his private jet made an emergency landing in Illinois.