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Keep the Change - Tribute To Daniela

Former KEEP THE CHANGE lead female vocalist DANIELA DI SANTE passed away on Friday September 5th, 2003.

We have dedicated this page to her, and her family and friends, in memory of this special, young lady.

Daniela officially joined KEEP THE CHANGE on August 28th, 2001 and went on to perform 37 shows up until March 2002, when she physically could not continue due to cancer.





Daniela showing off her KTC "Tattoo" on stage at the Elephant Hotel

Daniela had the most incredible spirit and determination to beat the disease, and she poured it into her music.

Her passion was undeniable, commitment was unassailable, and she unconsciously brought a whole new lease of life

to KEEP THE CHANGE, in a challenging time for the band.

Her first ever show with the band was on Saturday June 30th, 2001, up in Tanunda, in what they called a show hall but

was more like a tin shed the size of Football Park, and being 5 degrees outside made it for an awkward night, to say the least. We froze to the bone, barely able to speak let alone sing and perform, and the frost coming out of our mouths, while attempting to belt out tunes, was turning to ice in front of our very eyes. Daniela was only filling in at the time,

as we were in the process of trying out girls for the vacant female position. Although we were most impressed with her, we were convinced that she must of been thinking "if that's what the band has to offer me, I've got better things to do".

It wasn't the best introduction.

However, when she received a message, while on the other side of the world on holiday, that she got the gig,

her friends that were with her at the time say that she screamed, jumped and made a scene on the spot in total excitement. It was a dream come true for her to join, what she regarded, a top Adelaide cover band.

The rest, as they say, is history. She slotted in as if she had always been there, and never, ever complained about one thing in her whole time with us, whether it was money, particular gigs, equipment or, most remarkably, the dreaded "female vocal foldback" syndrome (fellow musos would know what I'm on about). Daniela fully understood her role in the band and played it out to perfection, especially when she tastefully and proudly flaunted her cleavage, leaving guys

in the front row drooling! She performed every show as if it was her last (even before her cancer came back),

and her enthusiasm, rarely seen with our previous lead female vocalist, spread throughout the rest of the band.

She truly was a joy to work with.

Daniela twinkling out a tune on the piano

Daniela often stated that her time with KEEP THE CHANGE were the best times she's ever had, highlighting New Year's Eve 2001 at the Lockleys Hotel, and we're glad to have given her that. I hope she realised that she gave as much back to us also.

Further gig highlights that stick out in our minds are:

2001 Port Power Best & Fairest at the Adelaide Convention Centre
Daniela, being the only Power fan in the band, was in her glory, while the other boys were planning a bomb scare.

It was a great night though, and Daniela certainly got her thrills.

Mildura road trips
We thought living up the band life of "Sex, Drugs and Rock'n'roll" was a boy thing.... until Daniela came along! No, there was no hanky panky or hard drugs, but we partied hard, and believe me, Daniela wasn't left behind. The best thing is that we have it all on film to look back on over the years.

Unfortunately, Daniela was too ill to ever tour nationally with us, although she desperately wanted to.


On stage in Mildura, with Daniela feeling Anthony's pain!

Natalie Sfera sees the funny side of Daniela and Anthony's recovery session,
in the Mildura hotel that was later trashed.

As if we needed more convincing of her courage and determination, Daniela showed us one last glimpse of what

she was made of in December, 2002. She had already left the band for 6 months or so, due to her illness, but even

through the tough times of her chemotherapy, she was still determined to get back to what she loved to do...

SING HER HEART OUT! She performed the second of three sets with us at a city nightclub, and despite her lack of lung power, she sounded the best we'd heard her in months, and you could tell by the glow in her eyes that she was ecstatic to be back on stage with the band.

Sadly, it was the last time Daniela Di Sante ever sang with KEEP THE CHANGE.

We were honored and privileged to have been asked to perform at her funeral service, and although it was one of the most emotionally challenging things we've ever done, we did it with pride, and hopefully we did Daniela justice. At her request we performed Bon Jovi's "It's My Life" acoustically, as well as the Richard Marx ballad "Right Here Waiting", two of her favourite songs.

From what we saw, Daniela crammed a lot into her short 22 years. We wish to God we could still have her around...

but thank God we had a chance to meet her, work with her, party with her, and just to know and be friends with her.

REST IN PEACE Daniela....
KEEP THE CHANGE will rock on with you in our hearts!

KEEP THE CHANGE in costume for the 2001 Sfera's On The Park Christmas Show


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