Prince to make history with eight-minute jam on Saturday Night Live

The singer will break the variety show's traditional two or three song format

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Prince is set to perform an eight-minute medley of hits on Saturday Night Live this weekend, breaking the US variety show's traditional format.

The "Purple Rain" singer will perform an extended jam live with his all-female band 3RDEYEGIRL instead of the usual two or three separate songs, and there will be no commercial interruption.

Prince will be promoting his latest two albums, Art Official Age and Plectrum Electrum, both released on 30 September this year.

Comedian Chris Rock will be hosting the episode on 1 November for the first time in 18 years. His one special request was for to Prince be his musical guest.

It remains unknown which song or songs Prince will choose to perform but he is expected to take to the stage halfway through.

Prince first appeared on SNL in 1981 and has performed three times since. He has played Dirty Mind's "Party Up", 3121's "Fury" and "Beautiful, Loved and Blessed".

Rock interviewed Prince before in 1997, when the pair discussed rap lyrics, his rivalry with Michael Jackson and artistic freedom.

Earlier this month, the social media world rejoiced when Prince joined Facebook and conducted a live Q&A with fans.

More than 4,000 questions were submitted but he only answered one fan, who had asked about 432 Hz sound frequencies.

Prince is among the bookies' favourites to headline next summer's Glastonbury, along with Fleetwood Mac, AC/DC and Muse.