by Jeff Niesel
A former member of the James Gang and Pacific Gas and Electric, blues guitarist Glenn Schwartz played Thursday nights at Hoopples for nearly 20 years before he took a hiatus a few years ago.
Known as much for his tirades about eternal damnation as for his skills on the six-string (read our phenomenal 2004 profile of Schwartz here), Schwartz attracted a motley mix of classic rock fans and hipsters to the bar located on the east bank of the Flats. On Oct. 10th, Schwartz makes his return to Hoopples and owner Norm Plonski Jr. says he’s expecting a big crowd.
“He’s doing okay health-wise,” Plonski says of Schwartz. “He was having some issues with his hands and probably didn’t want to play if he couldn’t do it at the same level he used. But he opened up for someone recently at the Beachland and wanted to play again. What I’ve been telling people who call here is that if he plays here or anywhere else, you better go see him. He could have two shows left in him or 20 left in him. You never know. And whenever he wants to stop, he’s going to stop again.”
Plonski says the club has booked Schwartz to play two more Thursdays — Thanksgiving day and the day after Christmas. And he says Schwartz, who has allegedly dialed back the preaching and long-winded rants, will be selling CDs and DVDs at the shows for the first time ever.
“You can expect more music and only a little bit of preaching,” Plonski says. “I don’t think you’ll hear the tirades that you used to hear.”