Desert Island Jazz
Mark Winkler (2010)

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It may have been inevitable that Los Angeles-born and -raised Mark Winkler would become a singer-songwriter. Like one of his aunts, his mother had been a big-band singer (she'd been known as "The Star Dust Lady", and had been an entertainer on cruises to Panama). He says "We were singing standards from the Great American Songbook", and recalls her giving him singing lessons while cooking meals later at night (it was late because she'd been out working). His two brothers didn't catch the bug, but Mark was writing stories at age seven, and wanted to be a singer from age nine.

Mark's songs have been recorded by Randy Crawford, Dianne Reeves and Liza Minelli, among others. He also co-wrote the hit "Naked Boys Singings", still running Off-Broadway after a decade. (He says "People went for the gratuitous nudity and they left humming the songs." One of one of his own musicals, "Bark" is all about dogs: he adds "They're naked, too!")

The good reception of his 2003 recording of songs all written by one of his idols, Bobby Troup, was trumped by that for 2009's "Till I Get It Right", which appeared on not a few "best-of" lists, including those of Don Albert at "Down Beat" and Christopher Loudon at "Jazz Times". Perhaps the best review is that by Jonathan Widran at "All Music Guide", which begins "Get it right? How about darn near as perfect as a spirited set of (mostly) original contemporary jazz vocals can be?"

Let's leave the last word to Mark himself. "Basically, I'm a simple guy: I like dogs, film noir, and writing songs."
Pick Artist Album Song Label
# 1 Mark Murphy Stolen Moments Stolen Moments Muse
# 2 Lorraine Feather New York City Drag You're Outa Here Rhombus
# 3 Bobby Troup Bobby Troup Lemon Twist Capitol
# 4 Shirley Horn Here's to Life Here's to Life Telarc
# 5 Julie London Julie Is My Name Cry Me a River MFP
# 6 The Manhattan Transfer Bop Doo-Wopp Route 66 Atlantic
# 7 Al Jarreau Look to the Rainbow Take Five Warner Bros
# 8 Claire Martin Make This City Ours Bye Bye, Country Boy Honest
# 9 Chet Baker My Funny Valentine Let's Get Lost Pacific Jazz
Book F. Scott Fitzgerald, "Tender Is the Night", or Robert Goolrick, "A Reliable Wife"
Luxury Item 1962 Studebaker Avanti, designed by Raymond Loewy
Castaways by date
Steve Adams
30 May
Cheryl Bentyne
17 Oct
Will Bernard
11 Apr
Barbara Borden
21 Mar
Jim Butler
13 Jun
Ian Carey
21 Feb
Judy Chaikin
17 Jan
Mike Clark
10 Oct
Freddy Cole
21 Nov
Beth Custer
01 Aug
Harry Duncan
03 Oct
Kai Eckhardt
03 Jan
Lisa Engelken
26 Sep
Don Friedman
07 Nov
Roger Glenn
05 Dec
Kimberly Gordon
28 Mar
Marty Grosz
29 Aug
Alex Hahn
08 Aug
Bill Holman
28 Feb
Tommy Igoe
07 Mar
Namita Kapoor
22 Aug
27 Jun
Lisa Mezzacappa
24 Oct
25 Jul
Glenn Richman
15 Aug
Alfredo Rodriguez
25 Apr
Dan Sabanovich
02 May
Grant Stewart
12 Dec
Judy Wexler
04 Apr