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Brothers Hypnotic –A Musical Tale of Jazz, Funk, Soul & Family on PBS

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To many, Jazz is THE signature genre of American music. Legendary Chicago trumpet master Phil Cohran believed and embodied that belief, and now his sons – eight of them – are continuing and building upon their father’s great music. Brothers Hypnotic on PBS is their story: the story of a family, a band and the music they play.

Brothers Hypnotic is part of the Independent Lens series and will premiere on most PBS stations at 10 pm Eastern Time, Monday, April 7.

Brothers Hypnotic is more than just the nickname of the Cohran family band – which is more properly known as the Hypnotic Brass Ensemble. Each of these boys from the South Side of Chicago began playing at their father’s knee when they were around four years old. That was more than 30 years ago for the oldest of the bunch, and they have grown from street musicians to a major force in modern music – playing with Prince, Mos Def and other big names in Soul, Funk, Jazz and almost every other type of music – including some that defy description let alone classification. That is especially fitting for the sons of a man who pioneered such genres as “astral-jazz” and “proto-funk.”

Producer, director and cameraman Ruben Atlas does not so much tell the story of the Brothers Hypnotic as he lets them tell it – and tell it largely through their music. That music is big, and bold, and brassy – as should be expected from eight men with trombones, trumpets, and horns, all of whom were brought up surrounded by Jazz, and its many musical cousins.

Brothers Hypnotic is part of the Independent Lens series and will premiere on most PBS stations at 10 pm Eastern Time, Monday, April 7.

Although CPTV Connecticut Public Television has not yet scheduled an air time for Brothers Hypnotic, audiences in Connecticut who have access to other Public Television stations can view the show, which is part of the Independent Lens series, when it premieres on at 10 pm Eastern Time, Monday, April 7. Check local listings for date and time for later or repeat showings.

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Mark G. McLaughlin is a Connecticut-based free lance journalist and game designer with nearly 40 years of experience as a ghost-writer, novelist, columnist, historian and game designer. An author whose first published book was Battles of the American Civil War, and whose games include War and Peace, The Napoleonic Wars and the Mr. Lincoln’s War set, Mark continues to be enthralled by stories from the age of Lincoln.
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