Rock singer Julia Preotu was not about to take no for answer. She had recently emigrated from Romania. She left her friends and a successful local band there for Buffalo, New York, where her mother had settled after remarrying.
"It was really hard to leave an entire life with friends, jobs and my band," she says. "But I understood that I was being given the opportunity to start over at a bigger level in America, which is the dream."
Buffalo offered a massive culture shock, and Julia didn't speak English. She did land a job at the local McDonalds. "That is where everything started for me," she says. "One of my co-workers was a drummer in a wedding band. He told me to go to NYC. I took that advice. I need to follow my dream and
find a band."
Already a stranger in a strange land, she left the only thing familiar to her, her mom, and headed to the big city.
New York did not welcome her with open arms. She struggled for two years to find the right band. "Those were really difficult years," she says. "I doubted my decisions all the time."
She had two things going against her: She was female and she didn't speak English.
"Not speaking perfect English was a major problem in fronting an American band," she explains. "Also being a female was a huge problem, as every rock band was looking for a male vocalist."