Dwayne Cannan – Spare Change
The first thing that came to mind when I saw this album was downtown. Dwayne is on the cover, carrying his guitar, coming out of an age-old telephone booth with the album name below him… Spare Change. You flip to the back-cover and see song titles like The Gutter Man, Lady, The Drifter, Cocaine Katie, and Slippin’ Away and immediately your mind conjures images of an underworld, and the lone man willing to bear it with the tool of his trade; a guitar.
This notion is confirmed when you listen to the music. Call it downer, loner, or whatever trendy adjectives are in vogue, but at the end of the day you are left with something real. One man and his guitar pouring his life out. My original assumption was confirmed when Dwayne told me “I was living downtown at the time, around the hookers, drug dealers, and that life.”
The album was released privately in 1980 and the sound is fairly consistent, as can be heard in the clips. There are 1 or 2 more standard blues songs, but the rest is in the vein of the clips. 300 copies were pressed and sold by hand at shows. Dwayne never received a response from the radio stations, newspapers, and individuals who received his record for publicity. In fact, he told me I was the first person in 26 years to contact him out of the blue regarding the album. However, Dwayne is doing well now. Coincidentally he just released his second album. In the meantime he gigged and learned another trade; comics, releasing a private comic some years ago. His new album features his own cover art, which is very striking and will hopefully raise his profile again.