Expecting Rain
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Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna
http://www.expectingrain.com/discussions/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=44742
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Author:  Bennyboy [ Wed February 8th, 2012, 13:21 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

XRaylroad wrote:
I have always liked "Visions of Johanna" a lot and I would even regard it as my favourite song right now. For some reason I cannot get enough of it at the moment. Actually, it is kind of funny how a song can change its meaning for you over the years. I think I have come up with a dozen of different interpretations of this song in the last couple of years and every time I listen to it I discover another way of looking at it. It surely is an amazing song.

My favorite version right now is the performance in Stirling (Scotland) on 13 July 2001. Even though Dylan messes up two lines, it is still a lovely rendition in my opinion. The sound of the acoustic guitars (in particular Larry Campbell’s) is beautiful and Tony’s bass playing is great as well. Jeez, even Bob himself plays some nice guitar melodies which do not make you want to cover your ears. Late at night, I like to sit down in my darkened room, throw in my earphones, close my eyes and let this performance wash over me a couple of times. It is fantastic!

Actually, I would love to turn this song into a short movie. I can picture the entire thing in my head and it looks so beautiful. I know where I would position the cameras and all, but unfortunately I do not have the necessary equipment and actors to put it into practice. Oh well, maybe someday.



Sorry to put a downer on your fantasy, but I was there for that performance. It was raining hard, the so-called Castle venue was the car park out back (with the added romance of burger vans every few yards), the crowd were pretty miserable and the show was quite shit - 'Visions' especially.

But hey.

Author:  XRaylroad [ Wed February 8th, 2012, 13:31 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

Fair enough. Beauty is in the ear of the beholder, I suppose. I was not at that show, just had a look at the video and enjoyed it quite a bit. However, now I am curious, is there any version of “Visions of Johanna” (preferably acoustic) from the NET which you like?

Author:  Untrodden Path [ Wed February 8th, 2012, 13:39 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

Bennyboy wrote:
XRaylroad wrote:
I have always liked "Visions of Johanna" a lot and I would even regard it as my favourite song right now. For some reason I cannot get enough of it at the moment. Actually, it is kind of funny how a song can change its meaning for you over the years. I think I have come up with a dozen of different interpretations of this song in the last couple of years and every time I listen to it I discover another way of looking at it. It surely is an amazing song.

My favorite version right now is the performance in Stirling (Scotland) on 13 July 2001. Even though Dylan messes up two lines, it is still a lovely rendition in my opinion. The sound of the acoustic guitars (in particular Larry Campbell’s) is beautiful and Tony’s bass playing is great as well. Jeez, even Bob himself plays some nice guitar melodies which do not make you want to cover your ears. Late at night, I like to sit down in my darkened room, throw in my earphones, close my eyes and let this performance wash over me a couple of times. It is fantastic!

Actually, I would love to turn this song into a short movie. I can picture the entire thing in my head and it looks so beautiful. I know where I would position the cameras and all, but unfortunately I do not have the necessary equipment and actors to put it into practice. Oh well, maybe someday.



Sorry to put a downer on your fantasy, but I was there for that performance. It was raining hard, the so-called Castle venue was the car park out back (with the added romance of burger vans every few yards), the crowd were pretty miserable and the show was quite shit - 'Visions' especially.

But hey.

Bennyboy, you make an interesting point and, in one form or another, its been discussed previously... but here we go again...

Some shows appear to be "flat" when sitting in the audience for any number of reasons while the bootleg of the show seems to reveal a pretty good or even great show. On other the other hand, shows sometimes receive "glowing" reviews as the greatest show since (fill in the blank) while the bootleg doesn't reveal anything of the sort.

I last saw Bob in 2005... and considered it a great show from start to finish... everything about it... setlist, band, arrangements, etc... I got the show when it became available. A couple songs, were a bit different, more dynamic than I had remembered them. A couple songs that absolutely blew me away at the show... sound good, but run of the 2005-Spring-Tour-mill. I still like the show a lot and while the recording is very good, it doesn't completely reflect the experience of being there.

I'm sure the location of the taper has something to do with it as well as the mood or expectations of the person listening. Its extremely rare that I hear a NET show that doesn't contain a gem somewhere in it but there have been many a recording that did not live up to the hype of the reviews.

There were some very good performances of Visions of Johanna in 2001... I'll have to go back and listen to Stirling to hear what's happening.

Author:  Bennyboy [ Wed February 8th, 2012, 13:49 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

XRaylroad wrote:
Fair enough. Beauty is in the ear of the beholder, I suppose. I was not at that show, just had a look at the video and enjoyed it quite a bit. However, now I am curious, is there any version of “Visions of Johanna” (preferably acoustic) from the NET which you like?


No, not really. Its such a majestic, mysterious song that to do it justice requires a concentration and focus and angled pitch of delivery from Dylan that he hasn't been able to muster since the mid 70s. Call me a song snob, but virtually all NET 'Visions' make me feel Bob is spitting on his iconic creation. He did do it acoustically in mid '95 and I thought that version had promise, but he never took it where it needed to go.

I stick to the '66 versions - doesn't get better than this:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NacOD8giFAY

with the odd foray into '76 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V0bT75elcdE- rubbish sound but romantic as all hell)

Author:  Untrodden Path [ Wed February 8th, 2012, 14:09 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

Bennyboy wrote:
I stick to the '66 versions - doesn't get better than this:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NacOD8giFAY
Like the Old Milwaukee Light Beer commercial... "It doesn't get any better than this"... the stuff so bad it would gag a maggot!

If that were really true, we may as well initiate the nuclear holocaust now and get it over with.


*** A side note... listen to New Morning from Stuttgart '91... even that's better.

Author:  Bennyboy [ Wed February 8th, 2012, 14:18 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

Untrodden Path wrote:
Bennyboy wrote:
I stick to the '66 versions - doesn't get better than this:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NacOD8giFAY
Like the Old Milwaukee Light Beer commercial... "It doesn't get any better than this"... the stuff so bad it would gag a maggot!

If that were really true, we may as well initiate the nuclear holocaust now and get it over with.


*** A side note... listen to New Morning from Stuttgart '91... even that's better.


Thanks, but I'll decline - my therapist is still dealing with the effects of hearing that show first time round.

Author:  XRaylroad [ Wed February 8th, 2012, 15:31 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

Bennyboy wrote:
No, not really. Its such a majestic, mysterious song that to do it justice requires a concentration and focus and angled pitch of delivery from Dylan that he hasn't been able to muster since the mid 70s. Call me a song snob, but virtually all NET 'Visions' make me feel Bob is spitting on his iconic creation. He did do it acoustically in mid '95 and I thought that version had promise, but he never took it where it needed to go.

I stick to the '66 versions - doesn't get better than this:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NacOD8giFAY

with the odd foray into '76 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V0bT75elcdE- rubbish sound but romantic as all hell)
You are now the third ER-member who has told me in the last couple of days that the ’66 versions of “Visions of Johanna” are the best. I am really starting to think that I am probably deaf because I do not see (or hear) the magnificence of these performances. I have tried a couple of times, but I simply cannot relate to the supposed greatness of the ’66 tour at all. On the one hand, Dylan reduces the musical component of this song significantly. I mean, his sparse use of the guitar does obviously not create a rich tapestry of sound, right? Thus, the vocals come to the fore and are more important, and so far, that is completely fine with me. Actually, I welcome that. However, I do not consider Dylan’s vocals in these performances to be as great as everyone says. To me it seems as if a stoned guy (no offense, Bob!) halfheartedly mumbles and talks his way through the lyrics, just to randomly over-pronounce every other word. I mean, why is it necessary to lengthen random syllables? Why does he have to sing, “He speaks of a farewell kiss to meeeeeeeeeeeeee”? Apparently many people like that. For me, however, this exaggerated way of pronouncing certain words ruins the entire atmosphere of the song.

I know the ’76 Rolling Thunder version of „Visions“ which you have posted. However, every time I listen to it, I ask myself, “Why does he have to scream certain phrases?” … “Little boy lost, he takes himself sOOOO SEEEEERIOUSLYYYYYYY” … meh. Is that what you consider "romantic as all hell"? By the way, (and that’s not Dylan’s fault), the constant mumbling coming from the audience does not make this performance any better. Seriously, if you are at a concert, shut up during the songs, for crying out loud!

The 1995 acoustic version of “Visions” from Philly is nice though. Could be better, could be worse, but all in all, it is all right.

Of course the 2001 versions are not the ideal solution either. The singing could be better indeed. So far I have only listened to the Stirling and Liverpool shows and every time he screws up some lines. However, at least there is some nice guitar playing by Charlie Sexton and Larry Campbell which compensates for these flaws.

Author:  Bennyboy [ Wed February 8th, 2012, 15:49 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

XRaylroad wrote:
Of course the 2001 versions are not the ideal solution either. The singing could be better indeed. So far I have only listened to the Stirling and Liverpool shows and every time he screws up some lines. However, at least there is some nice guitar playing by Charlie Sexton and Larry Campbell which compensates for these flaws.


My highlighting above.

See, this is what I dont get. Who cares what the fucking hired hand guitar player is doing, when Bob Dylan - the man who wrote and sang the song so perfectly in 1966 - is x up the words or mauling them in his mouth before belching them out?

As Larry Eden - may he rest in peace - used to say, you don't go to your favourite Indian takeaway to look at the light fittings.

Author:  raging_glory [ Wed February 8th, 2012, 16:06 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

My opinion regarding the '66 acoustic versions is this: The song had just recently been written and recorded. No matter how hard I try, I just can not imagine or hear any other version being supreme to the live '66 acoustic versions, followed immeasurably closely by the studio cut. Those versions are being delivered almost from the very place they had been written. The immediacy of those thought dreams, even listening almost fifty years later is palpable, at least for me. I do believe it is possible to recapture that feeling in later performances to a degree, otherwise what would be the point of ever performing songs, but twenty or thirty years later you have a very different person relating the song with years and miles of experiences that influence that feeling.

Author:  chrome horse [ Wed February 8th, 2012, 17:44 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

I've never really been attracted to the song - it's always struck me as long, tedious, and boring. I should make another attempt.

Author:  Johanna Parker [ Wed February 8th, 2012, 17:47 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

Nantes 2010 :lol:

Author:  Giada [ Wed February 8th, 2012, 18:54 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

XRaylroad wrote:
Bennyboy wrote:
No, not really. Its such a majestic, mysterious song that to do it justice requires a concentration and focus and angled pitch of delivery from Dylan that he hasn't been able to muster since the mid 70s. Call me a song snob, but virtually all NET 'Visions' make me feel Bob is spitting on his iconic creation. He did do it acoustically in mid '95 and I thought that version had promise, but he never took it where it needed to go.

I stick to the '66 versions - doesn't get better than this:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NacOD8giFAY

with the odd foray into '76 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V0bT75elcdE- rubbish sound but romantic as all hell)
You are now the third ER-member who has told me in the last couple of days that the ’66 versions of “Visions of Johanna” are the best. I am really starting to think that I am probably deaf because I do not see (or hear) the magnificence of these performances. I have tried a couple of times, but I simply cannot relate to the supposed greatness of the ’66 tour at all. On the one hand, Dylan reduces the musical component of this song significantly. I mean, his sparse use of the guitar does obviously not create a rich tapestry of sound, right? Thus, the vocals come to the fore and are more important, and so far, that is completely fine with me. Actually, I welcome that. However, I do not consider Dylan’s vocals in these performances to be as great as everyone says. To me it seems as if a stoned guy (no offense, Bob!) halfheartedly mumbles and talks his way through the lyrics, just to randomly over-pronounce every other word. I mean, why is it necessary to lengthen random syllables? Why does he have to sing, “He speaks of a farewell kiss to meeeeeeeeeeeeee”? Apparently many people like that. For me, however, this exaggerated way of pronouncing certain words ruins the entire atmosphere of the song.


Try the one I posted several hours ago, the singing isn't as exaggerated.

Author:  Bennyboy [ Wed February 8th, 2012, 19:09 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

chrome horse wrote:
I've never really been attracted to the song - it's always struck me as long, tedious, and boring. I should make another attempt.


Joke of the century - thanks for that!

Author:  Train-I-Ride [ Wed February 8th, 2012, 21:43 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

Visions is so nuanced, I doubt whether he's ever performed it anywhere near as well as he did in '66. Those live performances were incredible anyway, but especially so, because as intoxicated as he was, he gave every syllable maximum utmost attention and care. It's not LARS or ATW, two perpetual stalwarts that can get thrashed out, night after night, at RaspBlast Mach 5. '66 was perhaps the one and only year for Visions, and that makes it all the more treasurable.

Author:  Untrodden Path [ Wed February 8th, 2012, 23:32 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

Quote:
'66 was perhaps the one and only year for Visions, and that makes it all the more treasurable.


Pardon me, but...

Image

No offense intended but any '66 Dylan just turns my stomach...

Author:  Giada [ Thu February 9th, 2012, 03:17 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

:lol:
I think we need Harmonica Albert and his vintage Telecaster.

Author:  smoke [ Thu February 9th, 2012, 03:47 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

I'll admit I no longer care much for the live '66 versions, I used to love them, especially Dublin ("This is called Visions of JoHanna") but the extremely mannered singing on them often leaves me cold these days. I still love the original Blonde on Blonde take and selected live versions, although this is one song where I have a very low tolerance for lyric screw ups and with so many lyrics in the song...it happens. That occasionally he's pulled it off stunningly is a miracle of sorts. Even in 2011 he gave it pretty good workout in Phoenix or somewhere, he'd played it a night or two earlier and built on his inventions in style: one with the song and the moment, every bit as much as 1966, IMO. Dublin 2005 is outstanding. I probably said all this a few pages ago...but what the hell...

Author:  Bennyboy [ Thu February 9th, 2012, 10:16 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

Image

Author:  Untrodden Path [ Thu February 9th, 2012, 11:51 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

^It was starting to look that way but smoke may have rescued it.
smoke wrote:
I'll admit I no longer care much for the live '66 versions, I used to love them, especially Dublin ("This is called Visions of JoHanna") but the extremely mannered singing on them often leaves me cold these days. I still love the original Blonde on Blonde take and selected live versions, although this is one song where I have a very low tolerance for lyric screw ups and with so many lyrics in the song...it happens. That occasionally he's pulled it off stunningly is a miracle of sorts. Even in 2011 he gave it pretty good workout in Phoenix or somewhere, he'd played it a night or two earlier and built on his inventions in style: one with the song and the moment, every bit as much as 1966, IMO. Dublin 2005 is outstanding. I probably said all this a few pages ago...but what the hell...
There are some great acoustic performances from 2001 and 2002. Dublin 2005 is one of his finest recent.

The highly charged electric performance of Visions of Johanna that opened the LA show September 9, 1989 is to be commended. Bob and GE Smith tear through it with some nice guitar work and show nuances that are not revealed with the typical, delicately played arrangements.

Author:  Train-I-Ride [ Thu February 9th, 2012, 22:41 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

Untrodden Path wrote:
Quote:
'66 was perhaps the one and only year for Visions, and that makes it all the more treasurable.


Pardon me, but...

Image

No offense intended but any '66 Dylan just turns my stomach...


Try Zoomton.

Author:  ifitwastruetennessee [ Thu February 9th, 2012, 23:11 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

i did- and my friends say i've never looked better!

Author:  LonesomeSparrow [ Tue March 6th, 2012, 20:51 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

"Freeze out", early version of VoJ. Amazing...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eMtDPWqa ... re=related

Author:  Alouette [ Sat August 9th, 2014, 15:59 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

Mez wrote:
One of a favorites of The MEZ. What is not to like about this classic? Anyone have any defintive versions, in their estimations, to note for others here. There are so many to choose from! comments, posts, dates etc etc. MEZ


Definitive
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-wZ359spIVY

Author:  Viktor123 [ Sun December 14th, 2014, 21:48 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

https://www.mediafire.com/?pqx0t8buvadnglw

Found this one just now while listening to a show. Sounds pretty different.

Oakland, CA 2010-08-24.

Author:  Still Go Barefoot [ Mon December 15th, 2014, 01:34 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

Alouette wrote:
Mez wrote:
One of a favorites of The MEZ. What is not to like about this classic? Anyone have any defintive versions, in their estimations, to note for others here. There are so many to choose from! comments, posts, dates etc etc. MEZ


Definitive
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-wZ359spIVY

Had heard, but not seen that one. Very nice, thanks.
Really miss Bob on guitar.

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