There has been some disagreement about who played the memorable lead guitar on this track. Robertson was listed in the original album credits, and many Dylan fans became well-acquainted with his guitar playing through his other studio and concert recordings with Dylan, and indeed with The Band. The lead guitar on "Visions Of Johanna", being in a very similar style, was widely assumed by fans – myself included – to be by Robertson. Even Sony, as recently as 2015, credited Robertson with guitar on this song in the notes for the Collector's Edition of The Cutting Edge 1965-1966.
However, it has now been established beyond reasonable doubt that Robertson did not attend the February 1966 sessions at which this track was recorded – see the second part of the note in Part I regarding the recording of the album. That leaves the question of who did play the lead guitar on the final take of this song, and that seems to have been answered by Daryl Sanders in his recent book on the making of Blonde On Blonde:* it was Nashville musician Jerry Kennedy, who was indeed also included in the original album credits. Michael Krogsgaard's 1995 notes on the sessions,† derived from Columbia's archived documentation, showed Kennedy to have been present on that date, and allowing for the known significant slippage of the day's recording schedule, he was most likely present by the time this song was recorded. Most Dylan fans would be far less acquainted with Kennedy's playing than with Robertson's, but a listen to his 1965 album From Nashville to Soulville shows him to be capable of playing in a very similar style.
Theoretically, the lead guitar could have been dubbed
onto the song by Robertson during the later sessions in March, but that now
seems like an unnecessary conspiracy theory. Krogsgaard does not mention
any work being done
on this song at the March sessions, and Robertson has never claimed any credit
for it. In his autobiography,‡ he alludes to his playing on the earlier New York
recordings of the song (when it was called "Freeze Out") and then says 'Bob
recorded it later as “Visions of Johanna,” and it turned out brilliant.'
*Daryl Sanders, That Thin, Wild Mercury Sound: Dylan, Nashville and the Making of Blonde on Blonde, Chicago Review Press, 2018, pp.100-102
‡ Robbie Robertson, Testimony, Random House, 2015, p.190