Expecting Rain
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Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna
https://www.expectingrain.com/discussions/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=44742
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Author:  frenchdog [ Mon July 17th, 2017, 10:18 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

Not a bad track but its no Catfish.

Author:  Senyor Timbaler [ Mon July 17th, 2017, 11:13 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

Are you kidding? Yes?

Author:  Nightingale's Code [ Mon July 17th, 2017, 11:20 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

frenchdog wrote:
Not a bad track but its no Catfish.

And aren't we lucky it's not

Author:  gibsona07 [ Sat July 29th, 2017, 21:36 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

I read somewhere that the lyrics to Visions of Johanna were first published in a US magazine before the release of Blonde on Blonde. I can't seem to find or remember where. Can anyone help?

Author:  The Mighty Monkey Of Mim [ Sun July 30th, 2017, 02:39 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

gibsona07 wrote:
I read somewhere that the lyrics to Visions of Johanna were first published in a US magazine before the release of Blonde on Blonde. I can't seem to find or remember where. Can anyone help?

https://www.theguardian.com/music/2008/ ... lk.culture

It was in the June 1966 issue of Glamour.

Author:  NateW [ Wed March 7th, 2018, 03:24 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

Visions of Johanna was my rabbit hole into the world of Dylan’s music. Fifteen years after listening to Blonde on Blonde for the first time I’m sill coming back to it and thinking about it. I know the song inside and out and I can “make it all add up” EXCEPT for one part that remains opaque.

But like Louise always says

"You can't look at much, can you man?"

As she, herself prepares for him

And Madonna, she still has not showed

We see this empty cage now corrode

Where her cape of the stage once had flowed

I can understand the imagery of a long awaited Madonna’s absence, but for the life of me I can’t piece together what it is that Louise is always saying, what the cage is for, or what the heck a “cape of the stage” might have been. I’m not looking for a literal meaning (“Madonna is Joan Baez...” “empty cage now corrodes is slang for coming down off of heroin..” blah blah blah) but just trying to get a bit of a better grasp on the imagery. Has anyone thought about what Dylan is saying in these lines?

Author:  dvdunplugged [ Wed March 7th, 2018, 09:09 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

I like most of the performances from the 2000/2002 era but this thread has led to me trying to evaluate which was the best performance included in the Live 1966 set. Difficult one, have I really got to listen to all those performances again?

Author:  Anr Bjotk [ Thu March 8th, 2018, 06:16 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

My favourite must be the "Freeze Out" outtake version from Thin Wild Mercury Music.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WYifDaD96rM&t=0s&index=1&list=PLES-mzWRqst3QpcBKC8GRIFuLjnYMPVvm

Author:  dvdunplugged [ Thu March 8th, 2018, 10:41 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

Anr Bjotk wrote:
My favourite must be the "Freeze Out" outtake version from Thin Wild Mercury Music.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WYifDaD96rM&t=0s&index=1&list=PLES-mzWRqst3QpcBKC8GRIFuLjnYMPVvm


So what's your favourite from the Live 1966 shows?

Author:  Anr Bjotk [ Thu March 8th, 2018, 10:46 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

dvdunplugged wrote:
Anr Bjotk wrote:
My favourite must be the "Freeze Out" outtake version from Thin Wild Mercury Music.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WYifDaD96rM&t=0s&index=1&list=PLES-mzWRqst3QpcBKC8GRIFuLjnYMPVvm


So what's your favourite from the Live 1966 shows?


I'll be boring and say London, 26 May. Nothing really matches that Freeze Out outtake, imo. But I'm willing to be proven wrong. Throw some dates at me. I'm hungy. :lol:

Author:  mjmooney [ Thu March 8th, 2018, 10:57 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

Anr Bjotk wrote:
My favourite must be the "Freeze Out" outtake version from Thin Wild Mercury Music.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WYifDaD96rM&t=0s&index=1&list=PLES-mzWRqst3QpcBKC8GRIFuLjnYMPVvm
So, is that take included in the Cutting Edge set?

Author:  Anr Bjotk [ Thu March 8th, 2018, 11:03 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

mjmooney wrote:
Anr Bjotk wrote:
My favourite must be the "Freeze Out" outtake version from Thin Wild Mercury Music.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WYifDaD96rM&t=0s&index=1&list=PLES-mzWRqst3QpcBKC8GRIFuLjnYMPVvm
So, is that take included in the Cutting Edge set?


Visions of Johanna (Take 14, Complete), Disc 5, (Deluxe). Methinks...

Author:  mjmooney [ Thu March 8th, 2018, 11:05 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

Anr Bjotk wrote:
mjmooney wrote:
[quote="Anr Bjotk"]My favourite must be the "Freeze Out" outtake version from Thin Wild Mercury Music.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WYifDaD96rM&t=0s&index=1&list=PLES-mzWRqst3QpcBKC8GRIFuLjnYMPVvm
So, is that take included in the Cutting Edge set?


Visions of Johanna (Take 14, Complete), Disc 5, (Deluxe). Methinks...[/quote]Thank you.

Author:  A Million Faces [ Sun March 11th, 2018, 04:42 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

Listen to actor Willem Dafoe reference the lyrics when describing his life as a dirty young man:

https://youtu.be/Nwj96g2J-vw?t=1788

Same thing, different link:

https://youtu.be/nz09C9X54DY?t=831

Author:  Take It Easy Fred [ Sun March 11th, 2018, 18:30 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

NateW wrote:
Visions of Johanna was my rabbit hole into the world of Dylan’s music. Fifteen years after listening to Blonde on Blonde for the first time I’m sill coming back to it and thinking about it. I know the song inside and out and I can “make it all add up” EXCEPT for one part that remains opaque.

But like Louise always says

"You can't look at much, can you man?"

As she, herself prepares for him

And Madonna, she still has not showed

We see this empty cage now corrode

Where her cape of the stage once had flowed

I can understand the imagery of a long awaited Madonna’s absence, but for the life of me I can’t piece together what it is that Louise is always saying, what the cage is for, or what the heck a “cape of the stage” might have been. I’m not looking for a literal meaning (“Madonna is Joan Baez...” “empty cage now corrodes is slang for coming down off of heroin..” blah blah blah) but just trying to get a bit of a better grasp on the imagery. Has anyone thought about what Dylan is saying in these lines?

I think cape of the stage just means something theatrical, something a beautiful woman would be expected to wear for the benefit of the mules who are wearing the jewels and binoculars.

My feeling is the Madonna has left because the scene is b u l l s h i t, she has been hung up in someone else's zoo and is tired of parasites like the peddler.

Or maybe the Madonna never existed in the first place and people like Louise are left to fill an imaginary void. Louise has to appear to be the Madonna for the sake of people who cannot handle reality (can't look at much / prepares herself for him).

but it's all a beautiful mess really, I don't think you can even pin down grammatically which character is saying what to who in that verse. I like what I think it means, but I can in no way claim to understand it.

Author:  Anr Bjotk [ Sun March 11th, 2018, 18:40 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

That line "Ya can’t look at much, can ya man?” has always haunted me because I cannot figure out what it means.

Author:  Take It Easy Fred [ Sun March 11th, 2018, 18:54 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

To me it sounds like it's directed at someone who cannot face reality.

Author:  tyke [ Mon August 13th, 2018, 09:40 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

Take It Easy Fred wrote:
To me it sounds like it's directed at someone who cannot face reality.


I have just been listening to the Belfast 66 version of VoJ on the Bob Dylan Live disk and this reconnected me with this masterpiece. If I could only have one Dylan track, I think it would be VoJ. I trawled through six pages here because I have always found the last verse the most obscure. I was beginning to despair till I found your discussion right at the end.

Without believing in single interpretations (that's one reason its a masterpiece), I identify with Marqusee's proposition that it's on one level about strandedness, possibly waiting and hoping for inspiration from the muse. So 'you can't look at much can you man....' could be something said to someone who is in their head, dreaming, not quite there. And the corroding empty cage is the box such creative geniuses are in.

Author:  OldHenryLee [ Mon August 13th, 2018, 11:57 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

I see that line as saying that there's no use in thinking about another until that other decides on her interest level.

I know a lot have different views on this songs meaning. I personally see it as a longer more cryptic way of saying what this song says:

https://youtu.be/WUeMYn20ZSU - Cowboy Song by Dan Reeder

Johanna is a dream lady of what young men often see as the ideal woman which is of course impossibly so. .... You know, instead of appreciating the one in front of you end up dreaming of someone else that would never live up to the falsehearted expectations you put on em anyways.
.... Something like that along with other nuggets of wisdom intertwined throughout.

I have a lot of favorites with this one. .... Listened to the Biograph one the most through the years. Also really like the live '96 version. Believe it's available in Thousandhighways site. .... Most recently been listening to a version from 11/20/01 show that I find fantastic. .... Other favs have already been mentioned a bunch in this thread

Author:  Anr Bjotk [ Mon August 13th, 2018, 16:33 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

OldHenryLee wrote:
I see that line as saying that there's no use in thinking about another until that other decides on her interest level.

I know a lot have different views on this songs meaning. I personally see it as a longer more cryptic way of saying what this song says:

https://youtu.be/WUeMYn20ZSU - Cowboy Song by Dan Reeder

Johanna is a dream lady of what young men often see as the ideal woman which is of course impossibly so. .... You know, instead of appreciating the one in front of you end up dreaming of someone else that would never live up to the falsehearted expectations you put on em anyways.
.... Something like that along with other nuggets of wisdom intertwined throughout.

I have a lot of favorites with this one. .... Listened to the Biograph one the most through the years. Also really like the live '96 version. Believe it's available in Thousandhighways site. .... Most recently been listening to a version from 11/20/01 show that I find fantastic. .... Other favs have already been mentioned a bunch in this thread


Dublin 2005 version is pretty good too.
But which 1996 version and which Thousandhighways-compilation are you referring to, councilor?

Author:  yopietro [ Tue August 21st, 2018, 06:37 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HSoNj7kGITg

This performance from a couple of nights ago in Sydney is the most interesting Visions of Johanna I've heard in a very long time. Dylan seems to have found the heart of the song again. In the loose and inspired interplay among the band. The opposite of autopilot. And that piano. He seems to be channeling something free, whimsical and timeless on his piano. He's in the moment and inhabits the song in a different way. Whatever this alchemy was, it moved me in a way this song hadn't in a many a moon.

Author:  OldHenryLee [ Tue August 21st, 2018, 13:23 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

Anr Bjotk wrote:
OldHenryLee wrote:
I see that line as saying that there's no use in thinking about another until that other decides on her interest level.

I know a lot have different views on this songs meaning. I personally see it as a longer more cryptic way of saying what this song says:

https://youtu.be/WUeMYn20ZSU - Cowboy Song by Dan Reeder

Johanna is a dream lady of what young men often see as the ideal woman which is of course impossibly so. .... You know, instead of appreciating the one in front of you end up dreaming of someone else that would never live up to the falsehearted expectations you put on em anyways.
.... Something like that along with other nuggets of wisdom intertwined throughout.

I have a lot of favorites with this one. .... Listened to the Biograph one the most through the years. Also really like the live '96 version. Believe it's available in Thousandhighways site. .... Most recently been listening to a version from 11/20/01 show that I find fantastic. .... Other favs have already been mentioned a bunch in this thread


Dublin 2005 version is pretty good too.
But which 1996 version and which Thousandhighways-compilation are you referring to, councilor?


http://thousandhighways.blogspot.com/20 ... e.html?m=1 -
This one indeed. ... Bouncey acoustic styles & whatnots. Good times for all that's willing.


Just heard the new one from 8/19/18 & very much uplifted seeing it upon the setlist. ... Really enjoyed the piano work.... especially during the beginning of the song.

Author:  toilandblood546 [ Tue August 21st, 2018, 15:31 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

I don't see the song as being about any kind of ideal or symbolic woman. I think it's quite literally a song about being with one woman (a Louise) while your heart is really with another (a Johanna). All of the imagery is of feeling lost. It's the opposite of the CSN song, If You Can't Be With the One You Love, Love the One You're With. It's more honest. Madonna isn't an ideal, it means literally, "my lady." My lady still hasn't showed, so I'm gonna hit the road.

Author:  Untrodden Path [ Tue August 21st, 2018, 16:35 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

yopietro wrote:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HSoNj7kGITg

This performance from a couple of nights ago in Sydney is the most interesting Visions of Johanna I've heard in a very long time. Dylan seems to have found the heart of the song again. In the loose and inspired interplay among the band. The opposite of autopilot. And that piano. He seems to be channeling something free, whimsical and timeless on his piano. He's in the moment and inhabits the song in a different way. Whatever this alchemy was, it moved me in a way this song hadn't in a many a moon.

Thanks for the link.

I, for one, miss his acoustic noodling solos on this from the early 2000's while Larry and Charlie drove the melody and rhythm. No one solos quite like Bob.

Author:  Baltimore [ Wed August 22nd, 2018, 05:40 GMT ]
Post subject:  Re: Track Talk 117: Visions Of Johanna

Was the first live performance of Visions of Johanna at the Baltimore Civic Center in 1965? There is some evidence of this, but it seems unclear & unconfirmed....

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