I have to say that I had never heard of Saraya prior to the Firefest announcement and, being a lover of female fronted bands, was looking forward to seeing them. I wasn't terribly impressed with the albums however and can't say that I am overly disappointed.
I'm just glad I paid over the odds and bought the CD's on the second hand market rather than the reissued ones that would have put some more dollars in her grasping hands.
SANDY SARAYA COMMENTS ON FIREFEST WITHDRAWAL: In response to recent press from the Firefest team over the reasoning behind the Band Saraya pulling out of this year's FF7 show, singer Sandi Saraya asked that I publish a personal note from her. It reads:
"My sincerest apologies to Kieran, Tony Bruno, Chuck Bonfante and Barry Dunaway. But most of all to those who appreciated our small contribution to music..and those who wanted to see us play again. I know and understand why you all are disappointed in me, but would like the chance to clarify as to what the reasons were. Yes, its true that I requested a certain amount of money to play Firefest...but all those involved knew it was because I needed to cover my expenses as far as airfare/passport/incidentals/hotel for my family to travel with me, which was my sole purpose in agreeing to play in the first place...so that my 5 children could experience some of my past...I have no other motivation for doing it. I am not seeking fame, publicity, I am not trying to revive a career, and I certainly was not in this for personal gain. If that was the case, I would have told Kieran that I needed my family's airfare paid for when he first presented us with the opportunity. I didn't ask for that. I was first asked to play this in July of 2009. Back then I had the means to provide my family's tickets and travel expenses myself..but 3 months ago my husband had to undergo surgery..and then undergo physical therapy, and the final blow was the unforeseeable medical bills which exceeded $200k. In the meantime..I had heard little from the rest of the band..understandable as they all have busy lives as well. In the end it was choosing between what was best for my family for medical and financial reasons and having to go out of pocket to make it possible to perform at Firefest. I was truly looking forward to going and was hoping we'd be able to pull something out of the hat to make it happen..but communication between the parties was pretty hazy at best and things broke down pretty quickly via emails. I appreciate what Kieran has done for bands of our genre and am deeply saddened that he and my former bandmates chose to omit my extenuating circumstances and instead are portraying me as someone I am not. I understand the frustration, but not the character assassination of myself, as I believed at one point we were friends. I have the utmost respect for my band members regardless of their stance..It hurts me, yes, that they have gone this route..but if that's what they need to do, so be it. I won't blame them. It is extremely disappointing to all involved, and especially the fans, and for that I am sorry. That being said..I hope you now can find it in your hearts to understand. Thank you - Sandi Saraya."