Concert Recap & Photos: The Schemers Ring During The Met’s Holiday Season (November 24, 2021)
It’s not every night that you get to see a group of “local boys” who look and sound like they’re the greatest rock and roll band in the world. We’re talking about local legends The Schemers, who put on another stellar show on Wednesday, November 24th at the Met in Pawtucket, once again proving that great bands don’t die, they just graze a bit.
The Schemers were entered into the RI Music Hall of Fame a long time ago and here they are, still performing right at the end of the hall… literally. Their fans are gray with them – more sitting than standing these days, although the dance floor is never empty during a Schemers show. So what makes them so awesome, even when the crowds quieten down a bit on a pre-Thanksgiving night?
Start with the voice of Mark Cutler, that perfect place where the voices of Tom Petty and Mick Jagger meet. The hell-tight rhythm section, led by Rick Couto on drums and Jimmy Berger on bass, gives it all it can, fueling every track. Add Emerson Torrey’s jingle-jangle lead guitar to Cutler’s Telecaster, add Dickie Reed’s keyboard phrasing to complete the tricky points, and you’ve got yourself a band. It’s a simple formula, really.
Most of their songs, like “Danger Avenue”, “High Fashion Girl” and “I Want Some Fun” are well known to fans. They always sound fresh and play every riff with passion as if they just did in the garage and are happy to share it with their fans.
Why on earth not add the Cornelius Brothers classic “It’s Too Late”, recently heard in Spike Lee’s BlacKkKlansman movie? The group meets the moment on each track, the essence of rock and roll, fully engaged, pushing the limits of solos and extended jams that seem to be able to last forever.
A few years ago, before Covid, when Cutler was dealing with health issues, there was doubt this group would ever play again. The weather was on our side that night – two full sets, a 30+ minute multi-song encore for ten dollars? You’re kidding !
WUN photographer Rick Farrell was there and shared some photos from the evening. Enjoy!