A Troy University student is doing his part to make Disneyland the happiest place on Earth.
The band, a tradition at the park since 1971, gives top college musicians from all around the country a chance to learn about the entertainment industry first-hand through clinics with world-renowned artists and daily performances at Disneyland in Anaheim, California.
Grigsby, a trumpeter, auditioned in Atlanta earlier this year and was selected from the hundreds who tried out nationwide.
“Growing up, we did all-state band or all-county band, things like that, and those were cool achievements, but this is the All-American Band, where hundreds of people auditioned all over country,” said Grigsby, 22. “It’s a really special thing.”
Grigsby flew to California in May, and the performances began May 23.
According to the band’s Facebook page, the All-American Band was designed to cultivate relationships between the Disneyland Resort and colleges and universities around the country, selecting the top college-band students for a world-class summer internship program.
Students perform five sets per day five days per week as part of the program.
While the learning curve was steep, the experience has already proven valuable.
“We’ve met and gotten to play with Grammy-winning artists and producers,” Grigsby said. “The exposure that we get being in this band is ridiculous. They bring in people within the music business that we’ve always looked up to — my trumpet heroes. They bring in these people for us to work with. We get to network and meet the people we’ve looked up to.”
Grigsby and his bandmates are living in dorms at California State University, Fullerton, and the experience is a far cry from his youth in Ocean Springs, Mississippi.
“It’s incredible. The people are incredibly nice and the weather is amazing,” he said. “It’s different from what I’ve experienced before, because there are so many millions of people in the greater L.A. area.”
His time in the All-American Band has cemented Grigsby’s plan for the future.
“I feel more confident in my career choice, in being a musician,” he said. “I want to be a studio musician here in L.A. It’s been shown to me that anybody can do anything if you try hard enough. Eventually, opportunity will come.”