Senior Chief James Mean serves as the director of the Highty-Tighties, the regimental marching band.
A native of Beverly, Massachusetts, and a graduate of the University of New Hampshire, Bean joined the Naval Academy Band in 1985 and was named principal trumpeter three years later. He served a distinguished Naval career for 22 years, and he performed with the Naval Academy’s jazz ensemble, led the brass quintet, and was featured as soloist with the concert band on numerous occasions. Achieving the rank of senior chief musician, he was one of the band’s ceremonial leaders and conducted countless ceremonies for national and foreign dignitaries, including the vice president and the secretary of the Navy.
In addition to playing professionally with the Navy, he has been fortunate to perform with such luminaries as maestro Leonard Slatkin, composer Marvin Hamlisch, and jazz greats Phil Wilson, Eddie Daniels, Bobby Shew, and Clark Terry. He performed with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra Pops in a series featuring the music of John Williams.
After retiring from the Navy in 2007, Bean began a second career as a music educator. A teacher in Queen Anne’s County for six years, Bean was director of bands at Matapeake Middle School, building the program from 40 students to well over 100 and earning superior and excellent awards at multiple Music in the Park competitions.
A regular contributor of reviews of new music for the International Trumpet Guild, he has also served as an adjudicator for the National Trumpet Competition, high school division.
Bean has a Masters of Music in Performance from Towson University .
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