The L.A. Grand Prix
Updated: Dec 29, 2019
By Lorri Whiteside -
The L.A. Grand Prix was held in downtown L.A. on August 31, 1997. Studebaker Hawk was representing Arrow93FM as their house band. We had to park in a special funky parking lot and lug the gear in from about a half mile away on that warm day. All the family members grabbed a piece of gear and we all trudged through the entry gate and proceeded to the covered bandstand on Olvera Street. Another band was finishing up and there was a little time before downbeat. We found a spot in the shade and settled in.
The band gave a great performance to an appreciative crowd that day. Halfway into the set, a cameraman from Channel 9 news began filming the band. After the last song, Dan asked the cameraman if we could get a copy of the footage and the cameraman, who was also a musician, said he would see what he could do and took our address. He told us that the footage would likely be shown at the end of the newscast that night and mixed in with some race footage.
Triumphant, the band headed home, set our VCR’s, and waited for the broadcast that evening. About 20 minutes into the newscast, the race story began and included a good long clip of the band. We were all thrilled with the footage, and especially happy that it aired in the middle of the broadcast and not at the end because two minutes after our segment finished, there was breaking news that Princess Diana had been killed in an accident. A very sad ending to an otherwise stellar day.
The cameraman sent us the raw footage a couple of weeks later. You can view that footage on our Facebook page under “Videos”.
The tape that we recorded from the actual newscast somehow disappeared or got recorded over (doh!) and is lost forever, but our memories of that day remain.