The blends of Sandy Bull constitute a prodigious synthesis of antithetical idioms and one of the most lasting conquests of the vanguard folk. Away from Nashville how much him can be been, Bull didn't have anything from to divide with the dawning movement country-rock, but his lesson of creative individualism was fundamental to open new horizons to the kind that will be called " american primitivism ".
The banjoista and guitarist Sandy Bull starts as folksinger to the Woody Guthrie at the end of the 50's in Boston, where he was studying composition, but returned in New York in 1961, he became one of the fixed attractions of the clubs of vanguard soon (either folk either jazz) of the Greenwich Village.
In locals as the Gaslight Cafe, where he played since 1961 he came in contact with the dawning free-jazz and remained from there deeply influenced.
Enfant prodige of the guitar and the banjo, student of jazz and Indian music, in the 1963 engraved Bull his first disk, Fantasias For Guitar & Banjo (Vanguard, 1963) with the alone accompaniment of the drummer of Ornette Coleman (Billy Higgins), the luxury of a suite of twenty-two minutes allowing each other, Blend, for guitar granted as a banjo and battery. Influenced by the performer of oud Hamza El Din, with which had shared an apartment in 1963 to Hollywood, Blend is a synthesis of improvisations, jazz, raga syncopations, arab accords and folk melodies, a fascinating sonorous excursus that explores fabulous worlds filtered by the sensibility of a popular cantastorie alternating slow and transcendent phases to furious jam. The atmosphere being often psychedelic, two years before the psychedelia was born. Between the other passages of the disk some arrangements of classical music are distinguished for only banjo or alone guitar such as Carmina Burana fantasy.
Sandy Bull was probably the single most original performer of the early 1960s. Alas, he was 30-40 years ahead of the rest of rock music, and therefore was still neglected at the end of the century. While the Merseybeat bands were flooding the charts with idiotic three-minute ditties, Bull was already composing 20-minute long raga/jams that belonged to no known genre. These "blends" marked the first fantastic fusion of eastern and western music, even before western musicians learned what a sitar was.
Virtually no encyclopedia or history of music mentioned his name, but Sandy Bull is probably one of the few musicians of the 1960s who will be mentioned in every encyclopedia and history of music centuries from now.