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Review: Big Shot refreshing at The Paramount, throws in many surprises (Includes first-hand account)

Mike DelGuidice kicked off his set with “Scenes From an Italian Restaurant, as blue and purple lights dimmed from the stage. He paraphrased the final lyrics to “scenes from a Sicilian Restaurant,” which resonated well with his fans. Chuck Burgi killed the drums, and John Scarpulla was sensational on the saxophone solo.

“Huntington. How are you?” DelGuidice asked. “God bless!” He picked up the pace with the upbeat “My Life” and “Movin’ Out.” “Paramount. Good evening. How are you doing?” he asked. “Salud,” and he lifted up his glass.

He introduced Carmine Giglio on keyboards and moved into the moving ballad “Vienna,” and equally fun and entertaining were “Say Goodbye to Hollywood” and “Shameless,” which had a bluesy vibe to it. Nick Dimichino was delightful on bass.

Big Shot continued with “Sometimes a Fantasy” and “Keeping the Faith,” and they fully enjoyed themselves on “Don’t Ask Me Why.” He introduced John Scarpulla on saxophone, and broke into the fan-favorite “New York State of Mind,” which he incorporated as a crowd sing-along. Lead guitarist Tommy Byrnes sat on the piano, while DelGuidice played. Following the warm reception, DelGuidice got the audience pumped about Scarpulla’s mind-blowing sax performance. “Give it up for John Scarpulla!” he exclaimed.

It was refreshing to hear his new single, the gorgeous ballad “Mona Lisa,” which was a flawless vocal performance. An empowering tune was the patriotic “Goodnight Saigon,” which he dedicated to all that are fighting for our country and defending our freedom. This was a song that chilled his audience to the bone, thus leaving them chanting “USA, baby!”

“She’s Always a Woman” went out to all the ladies in the room for their unconditional attraction. “You’ve got a gift,” he told the Paramount crowd that was singing along with him. “You are good tonight. You’re very good,” he reassured them.

Most impressive about this show is that DelGuidice threw in a few surprises. He sang “Lullaby” with Carmine Giglio on piano (who had played piano for that same tune for LeAnn Rimes), and his version was soothing and expressive. An added bonus was him singing U2’s “Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For” solely on acoustic guitar, as well as “The Downeaster Alexa,” which was sheer perfection with DelGuidice on acoustic guitar, with Tommy Byrnes on electric guitar and Carmine on piano. Definitely one of his best versions of “The Downeaster Alexa” to date, which is this journalist’s personal favorite Billy Joel recording. His rendition of Elton John’s “Tiny Dancer” was superb, and his tone was reminiscent of Sir Elton’s.

The Verdict

Overall, Mike DelGuidice is like a box of chocolates. One never knows what songs he is going to sing at his live shows. The inclusion of the U2 classic, “Lullaby” and his very own “Mona Lisa” were absolutely divine. Big Shot is a band that one could never get tired of singing live. Well done Big Shot! A well deserved five out of five stars.

Markos Papadatos
Written By

Markos Papadatos is Digital Journal's Editor-at-Large for Music News. Papadatos is a Greek-American journalist and educator that has authored over 21,000 original articles over the past 18 years. He has interviewed some of the biggest names in music, entertainment, lifestyle, magic, and sports. He is a 16-time "Best of Long Island" winner, where for three consecutive years (2020, 2021, and 2022), he was honored as the "Best Long Island Personality" in Arts & Entertainment, an honor that has gone to Billy Joel six times.

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