Hypnotic Brass Ensemble
experimental & contemporary jazz with hip-hop & funk influence
Here’s a brass band that doesn’t grow out of the classic New Orleans marching tradition, but from the throbbing experimental jazz scene that thrived in Chicago in the 60/70’s. All eight
horn men are sons of Phil Cohran, the trumpetist of Sun Ra Arkestra and a founding member of the legendary AACM organization. The drummer is their friend. The brothers have literally grown up in cosmic jazz
while playing it. To this heritage and tasty jazz arrangements they add some funk and the hip-hop sensibility of their own generation. The result is hypnotic!
The groundwork for the truly streetwise band – they’ve played on the streets more than most – were laid in a youth band put together by their father in the 80’s. The actual
Hypnotic Brass Ensemble was founded in 1999. Before that the brothers rapped as the Wolf Pack. In 2005 HBE relocated from Chicago’s South Side to NY’s Queens. They have recorded five
albums, Pay Up
(2009) is the latest. HBE has also recorded with Erykah Badu and Maxwell and worked with Mos Def and The Blur’s Damon Albarn.
“Most of all I tried to teach them that they have access to the universe like everyone else,” says daddy-o Cohran, who ran a tight horn school for his boys.