Bob Dylan’s “Visions of Johanna”

Ma guitare Godin Seagull


In June 1966, Bob Dylan released one of his most popular albums, enigmatically called “Blonde on Blonde.” A double album, the recordings featured some of Nashville’s very best session musicians Many of the songs on this album have been recognized as some of Dylan’s finest and, in particular, “Visions of Johanna” has left its mark on our popular music culture.

Alrick Huebener


When Dylan originally wrote the song, it was under a working title of ‘Freeze Out’, which seems to support claims that it was written during or close to the East Coast blackout of November 1965, which affected parts of Ontario, Connecticut, Deleware, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Vermont. Over 30 million people and 80,000 square miles were left without electricity for up to 13 hours.

Several critics have hailed “Johanna’s Visions” as one of Dylan’s greatest achievements and the media are full of evaluations from amateurs which, not surprisingly, go from the very top to the very bottom. Certainly, the evocative and subtle language of the piece leads to large-scale interpretations. Songs like this have contributed greatly to Dylan’s 2016 Nobel Prize for Literature.



Listening to the song over the last 55 years, it hasn’t faded from my mind. It still fills me with the same sense of wonder as when I first heard it as a teenager. The words “The ghost of electricity howls in the bones of his face” or “The harmonicas play the skeleton keys in the rain” will haunt me forever.

As always, I must point out the help and exeptionel musical support of Alrick Huebener (double bass) and Roch Tassé (drums).

To hear the piece, click on the title below.

Richard Séguin – voice, acoustic ghuitars, electric 6-string guitars, electric 12-string guitars
Alrick Huebener – upright bass
Roch Tassé – drums

Visions of Johanna

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