The Band

C.J. Marvin

C.J. Marvin

Lead vocals & Piano

From the origins to 2007

Born in Melbourne, Australia, on March 25, 1964, he moved to Triest, Italy, in late 1970 where starting 11 he took music lessons for 6 years with Italian classical concert pianist Prof. Teodora Marzi-Lugli, and at 15 singing lessons with opera soprano Prof. Lualdi for 3.

As he learned the classic trade he rushed home to apply the new teachings to his own ideas and compositions which started taking shape already the very first year of training.

Prof. Marzi-Lugli understood pretty soon that C.J. had no intention of becoming the classical pianist she hoped for, but continued regardless to support him in his education finding herself often challenged with the unexpected task of helping him write down his own music long before he had even learned the language. With no time to waste C.J. rushed through his classical education at full speed.

In 1978 at 14, he performed his first public pop concert for a paying audience in trio with bassist Mauro Pitacco and on drums the late Paolo Catarossi, at the local Salesiani church hall. Thereafter he appeared at every local live-music club and summer festival he could.

In 1981 he met lyricist Robert Montanelli ad started a song-writing partnership. The relationship revealed a prolific match and in few months they wrote enough titles to fill up several albums. After forming a group of young talented musicians, “The Marvin Band” began playing semi professionally around Italy and Europe.

In the winter of 1985 the 2 boys were introduced to a wider audience with a song called “Why Not?!” written for a programme on private Italian network Tele 4-Italia 1. The track was soon picked up also by the London TV station Music Box, which used its main melody for a promo jingle the following few years.

In 1986 The Marvin Band booked their first gigs in Europe and C.J. made simultaneously his debut on Italian national radio and television stations (RAI). For his international appeal he was often invited to perform at the NATO base of Aviano, Italy.

In February 1987 the band was booked for 3 concerts at the “Neue Domicile”, one of the most exclusive live clubs in Munich, Germany, and on August 8 they performed at home in the famous “Piazza Unita’ d’Italia” for over 6000 people. The show, recorded and televised later on several local stations, was described by the City Council as “the best concert of the year”. A fantastic achievement considered the calibre of all the other artists who performed that same year in the square.

In the winter of ’87 another song penned by Marvin-Montanelli, “Sports on TV”, was written for a new Tele 4-Italia 1 TV sports broadcast.

By the end of 1988 C.J. split the band and moved to Milan, where he worked for record companies and studios (Polygram, DDD, CBS, and Ariston are just some), producing and singing on commercial jingles and demos for signed up artists in need of tunes.

In 1991 he went back on the road. With the new technology available at the time, he embarked as a “one man show” on his “Road of Hope” tour, kicking off at the Swiss temple of music Atlantis in Basel and touring all over Europe playing clubs, public and private gala events, and occasionally supporting major acts with original songs and covers.

In August 1993 he met American writer Linda Teller from Boston. The first result of their collaboration was the country flavoured ballad “The Travelling Man”.

That year C.J. performed a breath-taking record of 327 live shows.

May and July 1994 took him on his first U.S. trips to continue writing a new album with Linda, and most of it was done the very first week. Whilst in Florida C.J. teamed up with local musicians in Sarasota and Ybor City (Tampa) by joining them on the “Jelly Roll’s Duelling Pianos” show, and “The Travelling Man” became one of the most appreciated numbers in his set.

In 1995 and 1996 he toured constantly Europe and launched his own “CJM Productions” company.

Through many years of intense travels, C.J. met, performed, and established connections with the most unbelievable and unpredictable artists, such as English Deep Purple members Jon Lord and Steve Morse, Eric Clapton and Elton John and their bands, Samantha Fox, and Tony Ashton, Scottish Nik Kershaw, Australians AC DC, Italians Francesco Baccini, Mimmo Locasciulli, Alberto Radius, Edoardo Bennato, Eros Ramazzotti and former wife Michelle Hunziker, comedy actor Checco Zalone, and furthermore Germans Udo Juergens, Dieter Meyer of Modern Talking, producer Michael Kretu of Enigma and wife singer Sandra, Schmudo lead vocalist of Die Fantastischer Vier, Munchener Freiheit band, Swiss Andres Wollenweider, Raymond Fein, Goele, Gotthard, Florian Ast, Francine Joerdi, Chris Hess and Silver Zingg, Americans Curtis Steigers, Marla Glenn, Terry Lee McMillan, and Norwegians Jan Verner Danielsen, Bjoro Holland, and more recently Gina Aspenes, Eirik Softeland are just some of the long list.

In 1997 “Road of Hope” became a new single, he also released a new re-mixed edition of “Why Not?!” and published his first album “81TO88 vol.1”, a collection of original songs performed and recorded by The Marvin Band throughout their live activity in the 80’s.

In the end of 1999 his first solo studio album “The Travelling Man” was ready after multiple sessions in Italy, Switzerland, and the U.S. It featured contributions by international artists such as guitarists Vic Vergeat and Tom Lane, keyboardist/producer Matthias Heimlicher, poly-instrumentist Alessandro Simonetto, and harp-player phenomenon Terry Lee McMillan. Swiss-American engineer Ron Kurz mixed the work and delivered the final sound of the record issued on December 11.

That same day C.J. and manager Volker Bussmann also launched the first official “” website.

The year 2000 and the new Millennium started with a private performance in Belgravia, London, on December 31, where C.J. performed for 9 consecutive hours.

In April 2000, in recognition of his work, he was invited by Swiss top artists of “4-Heads Productions” to join their music web-portal ( As the only foreign artist there, he appeared along side with all the major Swiss artist of the period (Gölä, Piolam and Tony Sieber).

From 2000 to 2006 he continued performing throughout Europe, always backed up by his digital technology and occasional guest musicians.

In 2007, after years of pressure from friends and associates, C.J. decided to finally produced “The Elton Show – A Celebration of the Rocket Man”, a live musical show in honour of his idol and mentor Elton John. It grew quickly in name and reputation taking him in December that year on tour in Canada, where upon arrival at Calgary’s airport he was awarded with the “White Hat Ceremony” and offered the city’s honorary citizenship, normally something reserved only to dignitaries, celebrities and VIPs.

In 2008 he launched his own booking services within his music company, with the intent of managing himself directly and helping those great artists who received no attention by the ones pulling the strings in the Norwegian entertainment business. Since then he has helped, and continues to help each year, numerous musicians make a better living.

Between 2008 and 2013 his performances of The Elton Show grew consistently in popularity, and on the side he prepared the material for 4 new CD projects.

In 2014 C.J. took The Elton Show to a whole new level. He broke out of the comfort of the private and corporate markets of Europe and went “public” by starting to perform it now also for paying audiences in theatre venues. He expanded the production from the original small format of 4 people on stage (solo + 3 backing vocalists) to a solid 9 piece full live-band of amazing musicians.

As confirmation of its quality and value, it was joined in May by no one less than Elton John’s very own long time drummer and C.J.’s friend/hero, British Charlie Morgan.

In 2015 a new partnership with “Catten Nightclub” in Os, Norway, offered C.J. the opportunity of becoming one of the venue’s resident performers and its musical director.

Show-wise, in 2015 he made important steps forward in the management of the production by securing the cooperations of New York Broadway based agent Sharon Klein, and certified financial advisor Nathan Tiffe for new bookings in the U.S.

In 2016 more new people joined in to make The Elton Show a success: Oslo based promoter UK Impact, and Italy based management/promoters E.M. Corporation Agency, all currently working on a European tour in the making.

To be continued.

Charlie Morgan


With 4 decades in the business, much of it at the very top, Charlie’s resumé reads like a Who’s Who of the Music Industry.

Turning “Pro” in the mid 1970’s he soon got into the session scene in the UK, and very quickly became one of the busiest session
drummers in Europe, working with such diverse artists as Kate Bush, Tina Turner, Gary Moore & Wham!

In the mid 1980’s he became Elton John’s regular drummer (a post he would hold for the next 13 years), both recording & touring with him.

He has lived in the USA for the past 14 years, working regularly with Classic Rock band Orleans & recording for clients all over the world, including Barry Manilow, Mexican superstars, Manuel Mijares & Uri and Young Latin Grammy nominee, Alexander Acha.

Other credits include touring with Trisha Yearwood, Glen Campbell & Henry Mancini, and playing shows with: Tammy Wynette, Don Henley, Clint Black, The Moody Blues, The Guess Who, Julie Andrews, Lisa Stansfield, Chaka Khan…. etc., and now with C.J. Marvin.

Charlie Morgan also recorded 2 albums with Italian superstar Eros Ramazzotti and recorded for mote italian artists such as Claudio Baglioni, Angelo Branduardi & Massimo Priviero, as well as Gloria Nuti & Rossana Casale!

Coming to film scores Charlie Morgan recorded the sound tracks of Tomorrow Never Dies, Thelma & Louise, Kiss of Death, GI Jane, Quantum of Solace and Moulin Rouge.

Charlie Morgan

Maurizio Vercon

Maurizio Vercon


Guitarist, arranger and producer from Triest, Italy. Self-taught, he started playing out of love for music at a young age and has explored all styles and performed in all sorts of bands.

Has to his active 2 instrumental CDs published and distributed worldwide by RaiTrade/Videoradio (Everything is here, 2006, and For you, 2008, feat Frank Gambale), and is present with 5 tunes in 2 other RaiTrade compilations:“Fusion jazz rock & groove”, vol. 1 e 2.

Among the numerous RaiTrade, Gazzetta and Messaggero publishings, his music is present in over 1 million DVDs (Ritratto di Doria, Gol Juventus, Magie sul ghiaccio, Apoteosi Lazio, Gol Inter, Storia della Fiorentina, I miti Giallorossi, Benelli Sudamerican, Grandi rivalità, I miti Biancocelesti, Sfide indimenticabili, Estasi Lazio, DVD Pantani, DVD Ivan Basso, Storia della Nazionale).

In 2006 Italian national TV Rai chose one of his songs for the sports programme Speciale Mondiali opening theme (Too easy but not easy, feat Andrea Innesto Cucchia).

He has cooperated with numerous artists among which Frank Gambale (C.Corea), Luca Colombo (E.Ramazzotti, Nek, Sanremo), Maurizio Solieri and Andrea Innesto (Vasco Rossi), Max Gelsi and A.Fontana (Elisa, Tiziano Ferro), Ricky Portera (L.Dalla, Stadio, Bertè).

Since 2010 is part of GIG (Genuine Italian Guitar) rock show, together with Luca Colombo, Ricky Portera e Giuseppe Scarciglia.

Currently endorsed by a number of important music brands and makers such as ESP Guitars (backline and electric guitars), Elixir (strings end cables), Hughes and Kettner (amps and effects – Gold Music), Esseti Picks (picks), and Droplay Promega (cases).

He joined The Elton Show as lead guitarist in 2014.

Alessandro Leonzini


From Trieste, Italy. 49 years of which 35 holding his bass. For the last 15 has pursued intense careers by alternating teaching music in private schools to performing live and in studio.

Since his beginnings he spaced between all sorts of musical styles, like pop, soul, hip-hop, jazz, blues, and also country.

A member of C.J.’s “The Marvin Band” in the mid 80’s (independent artist), he has resumed his cooperation with the singer-piano player by joining “The Elton Show” in its full scale production in 2014.

Some of the artists he also cooperated with through his career include guitarist Maurizio Vercon (Italian independent), John Jorgensen and Charlie Morgan (Elton John), Paul Gilbert (independent – Mr. Big), Robben Ford (independent – Miles Davis), Al Castellana (Italian soul independent), Ghemon (hip-hop independent), and Ricky Portera (Italian rock guitar hero).

He appears on Al Castellana’s 3 latest LPs (soul), on the latest Magratea (Italian pop),and Ivo Tull Trio (Balcanic blues) projects.

Alessandro Leonzini

Giancarlo Spirito

Giancarlo Spirito


Drummer and percussionist born in Caserta, Italy, but moved at a young age to Triest in the North East. Started his musical studies at very young age and in the 80’s attended regularly seminars at the Siena Jazz Festival under the guidance of the great Bruno Biriaco.
Studied in Milan with “drum guru” Enrico Lucchini, already a professor teacher at the famous Paris school of Kenny Clarke and Dante Agostini.

He promoted seminars at Ravenna Jazz (Italy) with Elvin Jones (member of the John Coltrane’s Quartet), Grisignana Jazz (in Croatia), with Reggie Workman (bassist also collaborating with Coltrane), and at Jazz Udine. As a professor himself he promoted drum seminaries with Jimmy Owens and Bruce Forman, and ethnic percussion seminaries together with Trilok Gurtu.

He played in the Italian guitarist Andrea Allione Trio (Paolo Conte, Miriam Mackeba, etc.) and with American singer Jay Clayton, invited by the Conservatorio Jazz in Graz (Austria).
He has performed with numerous jazz musicians such as Mark Morganelli (New York, trompet), Renato Chicco (pianist-singer with John Hendrics), and many others, and recorded and performed with singer Anna Lauvergnac of the Vienna Art Orchestra.

As a lover also of pop and rock music, he recorded some albums also in that field. In 1981 he joined Italian-Australian artist C.J. Marvin and his The Marvin band, touring repeatedly Italy and Germany and remaining the band’s drummer until 1988. He appears on the 81TO88 vol.1 live-LP issued in 1997.

He recorded repeatedly for RAI (Radiotelevisione Italiana) and taught drumming at the “Scuola di Musica Moderna” (later renamed “Scuola di Musica 55”) in Triest.

Learning percussion he studied with the great Cuban artist Madeline Espinosa, prodigy of the huge Cuban artist Changuito.

After moving to Madrid (Spain) in the early 90’s, he performed and recorded with people such as Bob Sands, Andrzej Olejniczak, Antonio Serrano, Paco del Pozo, Curro Cueto e José Luis Gutiérrez, all huge personalities in Spanish music.

Giancarlo developed a vast experience also as a rock drummer by recording projects with the band Chamo and Spanish bassist Felipe-Lipe (former member of the leading Madrid movida band Tequila). He played and recorded with Irish singer John Tobin also on a tribute project to Chet Baker.

In Madrid he built a great activity of didactic concerts for schools of both jazz and ethnic music.

For over 10 years he worked with Asturian guitarist Angelo Rubio, in his Jazz Hondo (flamenco-fusion) Ethnic Trio, and the band Black Market (world music), with which he recorded the album “Distant Worlds”.
With these bands he performed at the Conservatorio di Lussemburgo, the Festival “7 sole e 7 lune” in Portugal, the DF Eurojazz Festival 2001 in Mexico, and at the Festival Internasional de Jazz de Ciudad Lineal (Madrid) with German saxophonist Klaus Kreuzeder.

He has toured extensively Spain, Portugal, Italy, Germany, Austria, Bolivia, Mexico, Croatia, Luxembourg, Equatorial Guinea, France and Norway.

Together with the fusion-flamenco-jazz band Jazz Hondo he has represented Spain at the international festival “Euro Jazz” in Mexico City.

Since 2014 Giancarlo is involved almost exclusively in The Elton Show, together again with his long time friend C.J. Marvin, covering the role of Master Percussionist Ray Cooper.

Ray Johnson

Keyboards & Backing vocals

Born into a musical family, Ray was exposed to and influenced by music from early childhood. Noticing his natural call for music, his parents made sure he would attend lessons from the very beginning of his early school years.

He studied violin and piano for 8 years and continued his education at the music academy in his hometown of Barlad, in Romania.

In the years to come he won several prizes in different music competitions both in Romania and abroad.

At the age of 20 he began travelling in Europe on different music endeavors, to countries like France, Germany, and Switzerland.

At 22 he moved to Norway where he worked in hotels and piano bars and also kept writing his own music.

In 2007 he established his own recording studio in Stavanger (Midnight Records) where he has written and produced music for different artists, both Norwegian and international, such as Joe Gilder (US), Stine Therese (NO), Tania Cepoi (SWE), and Alen David (RO).

He released two albums of his own: “Here and There” (2010) and “Standard Love” (2014). His single “Fly” (2011) has reached #1 on the Romanian Top 40 Pop Charts in May that year.

Currently the keyboardist of several projects, Ray has joined The Elton Show’s full scale production also in 2014.

Ray Johnson

Michela Grilli

Backing vocals

The last of The Elton Show members from Triest to join, in late 2015, as backing vocalist.

Between 2010 and 2013 attended private lessons of vocal performance with M. Feri, E. Leka and S. Camiolo, in Triest.

In 2010 she won the first prize for ”Best Voice” in the 6th edition of the regional singing contest Artisti in Vetrina.

In 2012 she attended a workshop on vocal performance at the Academy of Saint Vincent, Italy. Final
stage of the “Festival of Saint Vincent”, with an original song.

In 2014 she won the Rockaoke competition at Roadhouse in Covent Garden, London.
Since 2015 she studies musical theory, harmony, and piano with Maestro G. Vianelli in Triest.

Since 2011 she is performing as lead singer and backing vocalist in several clubs and venues in Triest and surroundings, such as the Round Midnight Jazz Club, Porto San Rocco, Café Rossetti, Café San Marco, Bavisela Festival in Piazza Unità d’Italia, and furthermore at the Fonzari Lounge and Island Ravaiarina (Grado, Udine), Restaurant Korteleh (Izola, SLO), Piazza Verdi (Muggia, TS) and many others.

In 2013 and 2014 she was one of the backing vocalist in Al Castellana’s band (soul singer-songwriter), performed at the MusicConnex Live, opening for Tony Momrelle, Flyover Club (Portobello, London, UK).

In 2014 she founded the Amy Winehouse Tribute Band called ”Back To AMY & The Beastie Tee” (10 members) and started performing in various festivals and events in the Triest area. She has also guested with an acoustic live session on the RAI 1 radio show I Bombi Inconsapevoli
In 2014 and 2015 she performed as resident lead singer at The Palm Beach Casino (Green Park, London) with the band Domix – the Dukes of Mayfair, singing pop, funk and dance music together with Najwa Ezzaher, the Voice of France 2014.

In the same period she held various performances in London’s Pizza Express Jazz Club (Soho), the KPH,
Hippodrome Casino, Bun ’n’ bar, Muddle & Swing, Silver Bullet, Troy Bar and more.

In 2014 she performed as the lead singer of James Coleman and the “Big-Band Theory”, directed by James Lawrence on the Dixie Queen Boat during a cruise on Thames river.

Since 2015 she has been a backing vocalist of The Rideouts, a british indie rock band based in Triest.

Michela has a Bachelor degree in Foreign Languages (German and Russian) at the University of Trieste, and apart from Italian she speaks fluent English, German, and Russian. She was employed by the Department of Legal Languages, interpreting and translating studies and documents, and is an employee at the Administration Office of the University of Trieste since 2006. She is also studying time management, communication, and workgroup skills, and is an experienced event planner.

Michela Grilli

Marianne Moen

Marianne Moen

Backing vocals

Marianne is from Notodden, Norway.

At age 8 she started signing in the local choir.  Since the age of 10 she was requested to appear as a soloist on every local public occasion which would arise.

She moved to Oslo at 18 and continued  signing in different choirs there.

In 1998 she moved to Treeforest, Wales, where she was part of the University of Glamorgan’s production “Return to the Forbidden Planet”.

In 2001 she moved back to Notodden where she took part in different cabaret groups and concert events, both as choir soloist and as lead vocalist.

She continues to perform as a singer for wedding ceremonies, funeral, and general public gatherings and functions.

Currently she is part of The Elton Show as backing singer, where she has been since the very beginning in 2008, and part of C.J. Marvin’s backup band performing original material.

Giulia Crocini

Backing vocals

“A soulful singer from Triest, Italy, able to enchant an audience with the warmth of her voice and the beauty of her smile”.

She started her musical journey in the early 70’s as a self taught singer-guitarist, immediately showing her strong charisma by collaborating at young age with the Triest local TV station Tele4, the theater group La Contrada (now Teatro Stabile di Trieste Orazio Bobbio, and with the Teatro Stabile del Friuli Venezia Giulia in the role of line singer.

In 1980 she moved to Milan where she performed solo in music pubs (Biblos in Brera) and joined show orchestras like I Babilon, and S. Righetti’s Orchestra, touring Northern Italy and Switzerland.

Back in Triest in 1983 she founded the Big Ben Tribe together with musicians Stefano Previsti, Renato Posani and Riki Persi, with which she recorded several dance records published by Baby Records in Milan. Their most successful release was a cover of David Bowie’s Heroes.

In 1985 she joined The Marvin Band lead by Italian-Australian artist C.J. Marvin, as backing singer and performing his original material.

In 1986 she also joined the band of Italian star Sergio Caputo as a backing singer on his Il Garibaldi tour, and participated with him to the music programme RAI D.O.C. conducted by Italian music and TV icon Renzo Arbore, and several other national events such as Milano Suono that year.

From there she joined the Witz Orchestra, a group of musicians merging music and comedy, with whom she performed again on several RAI TV programmes (Rimini Rimini at the Bandiera Gialla, Chiambretti on Tour, and also on Slovenian TV Tele Ljubljana, besides a number of theater shows.

In the 80’s she performed also with Ares Tavolazzi (former member of Area) in a band composed by musicians from Veneto and Friuli, including Bruno Cesselli.

In the early 90’s she had an intense live activity with the Slovenian group Happy Days with whom she won the Festival of Portoroz (comparable for importance to the Italian music Festival of S. Remo), with a song written by herself called Cocco Swing.

In the mid 90’s she began also teaching modern singing at the Roland school of music in Gorizia, Italy, and at the Scuola ’55 in Triest.

In the same period she collaborated with several local bands performing many different styles of music, like the Trieste Modern Jazz, Alfredo Lacoseliaz band, Reclame, Why not, Look Orient, One Way, Enzo Zippo, Stefano Franco with whom she won the RAI competition Il Cercatore di Perle, and others.

Since 1992 she has been the lead singer of the music trio GiuliaPellizzariBallaben(d), and since 2013 she has been performed also in duo with Maestro Marco Ballaben, offering a vast repertoire of swing & soul.

In 2015 and after exactly 30 years, Giulia returned to work with C.J. Marvin as a backing singer in his The Elton Show – A Celebration of the Rocket Man.

Giulia Crocini

Miriam N H Sleire

Miriam N H Sleire

Backing vocals

Miriam N. H. Sleire is a young extremely talented unknown singer with amazing potential discovered totally by chance by C.J. while he was performing one evening in a club in Bergen, Norway, in 2013.

After the normal presentations and a really unnecessary audition, she took the invitation to join The Elton Show and became one of its driving forces for the wonderful texture, strength, and perfect pitch of her soprano voice.

Her first appearance was at the 2013 solo (plus vocals) show in Willisau, Switzerland, with only 2 weeks to prepare. She exceeded every expectation and became at once C.J.’s duetting partner in the Don’t go breaking my heart segment, as captured also on the 2014 USF Verftet first full-scale show upcoming DVD.

Miriam has recently become a mother and is currently not performing.

The whole production wishes her well with her new role but waits and hopes for a return on her part one day soon. She is sorely missed.