Judging solely form the instrumentation of the Hypnotic Brass Ensemble, it would be tempting, though misleading, to look to the New Orleans's famous brass-band tradition as the group's inspiration. In fact, the musical lineage of Hypnotic's members stems from the rich, progressive jazz scene cultivated in Chicago during the 1960s and '70s. The seven brass players in the group are all sons of the esteemed jazz trumpeter Phil Cohran, a former member of the Sun Ra Arkestra, but perhaps best known as a founding member of the seminal Chicago-based jazz collective the Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians (AACM). The members of the Hypnotic Brass Ensemble were steeped in this musical influence from early on and have been playing music together their entire lives. After performing in a youth ensemble put together by their father, in the 1980s, the band officially formed as the Hypnotic Brass Ensemble in 1999, and relocated to New York in 2005. The band embraces AACM's collective approach to music making. While Hypnotic's music is a far cry from the free-wheeling, party atmosphere surrounding New Orleans brass bands, the group strives to make its musical roots speak to and for its own generation, infusing imaginative jazz arrangements with a hip-hop sensibility.
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