Skeeter Best

Clifton "Skeeter" Best (November 20, 1914 – May 27, 1985) was an American jazz guitarist.

Best played in Philadelphia from 1935 to 1940, recording with Slim Marshall and Erskine Hawkins. In 1940, he joined Earl Hines's orchestra, playing with him until he joined the U.S. Navy in 1942. After the war, he played with Bill Johnson from 1945 to 1949. He toured East Asia with Oscar Pettiford in 1951 and 1952, and formed his own trio in the 1950s. He did a critically acclaimed session with Ray Charles and Milt Jackson in 1957 called Soul Brothers.

In 1958, he recorded with Mercer Ellington and taught in New York City. He also recorded with Harry Belafonte, Etta Jones, Nellie Lutcher, Milt Hinton, Osie Johnson, Paul Quinichette, Jimmy Rushing, Sonny Stitt, Charles Thompson, and Lucky Thompson.

Birth and Death Data: Born November 20, 1914 (North Carolina), Died May 27, 1985 (The Bronx)

Date Range of DAHR Recordings: 1942 - 1958

Roles Represented in DAHR: guitar, vocalist, composer

= Recordings are available for online listening.
= Recordings were issued from this master. No recordings issued from other masters.

Recordings (Results 1-25 of 42 records)

Company Matrix No. Size First Recording Date Title Primary Performer Description Role Audio
Victor BS-073459 10-in. 3/19/1942 She'll always remember Earl Hines Orchestra ; Madeline Green ; Three Varieties Jazz/dance band, with female vocal solo and male vocal trio instrumentalist, guitar  
Victor BS-073460 10-in. 3/19/1942 Skylark Earl Hines Orchestra ; Billy Eckstine Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, guitar  
Victor BS-073461 10-in. 3/19/1942 Second balcony jump Earl Hines Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, guitar  
Victor BS-073462 10-in. 3/19/1942 Stormy Monday blues Earl Hines Orchestra ; Billy Eckstine Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, guitar  
Victor D7VB-0627 10-in. 3/5/1947 Pretty eyed baby William Johnson ; Musical Notes (Bill Johnson) Male vocal solo, with vocal quartet and jazz/dance quintet vocalist, instrumentalist, guitar  
Victor D7VB-0628 10-in. 3/5/1947 Don't you think I oughta know William Johnson ; Musical Notes (Bill Johnson) Male vocal solo, with vocal quartet and jazz/dance quintet vocalist, instrumentalist, guitar  
Victor D7VB-0629 10-in. 3/5/1947 That night we said goodbye William Johnson ; Musical Notes (Bill Johnson) Male vocal solo, with vocal quartet and jazz/dance quintet vocalist, instrumentalist, guitar  
Victor D7VB-0630 10-in. 3/5/1947 You didn't have to say I love you William Johnson ; Musical Notes (Bill Johnson) Male vocal solo, with vocal quartet and jazz/dance quintet vocalist, instrumentalist, guitar  
Victor D7VB-0631 10-in. 3/5/1947 Shorty's got to go William Johnson ; Musical Notes (Bill Johnson) Male vocal solo, with vocal quartet and jazz/dance quintet vocalist, instrumentalist, guitar  
Victor D7VB-0632 10-in. 3/5/1947 Half a love William Johnson ; Musical Notes (Bill Johnson) Male vocal solo, with vocal quartet and jazz/dance quintet instrumentalist, guitar, vocalist  
Victor D7VB-0633 10-in. 3/5/1947 Leave it to fate, Gate William Johnson ; Musical Notes (Bill Johnson) Male vocal solo, with vocal quartet and jazz/dance quintet instrumentalist, guitar, vocalist  
Victor D7VB-0634 10-in. 3/5/1947 Sharkies' boogie William Johnson ; Musical Notes (Bill Johnson) Jazz/dance quintet instrumentalist, guitar  
Victor D7VB-1486 10-in. 8/6/1947 My little red head William Johnson ; Musical Notes (Bill Johnson) Male vocal solo, with vocal quartet and jazz/dance quintet instrumentalist, guitar, vocalist  
Victor D7VB-1489 10-in. 8/6/1947 For once in your life William Johnson ; Musical Notes (Bill Johnson) Male vocal solo, with vocal quartet and jazz/dance quintet instrumentalist, guitar  
Decca 81296 7/20/1951 If, if, if you were mine Gladys Bruce instrumentalist, guitar  
Decca 81297 7/20/1951 I've got the blues for my baby Gladys Bruce instrumentalist, guitar  
Decca 81298 7/20/1951 Trinidad Daddy Gladys Bruce instrumentalist, guitar  
Decca 81299 7/20/1951 The right kind of feeling Gladys Bruce instrumentalist, guitar  
Decca 82670 4/9/1952 Lonesome and blue Hal Singer Orchestra instrumentalist, guitar  
Decca 82671 4/9/1952 I love the way you love me Hal Singer Orchestra instrumentalist, guitar  
Decca 82672 4/9/1952 Secret love Hal Singer Orchestra instrumentalist, guitar  
Decca 82673 4/9/1952 Please Dr. Jive Hal Singer Orchestra instrumentalist, guitar  
Decca 82958 6/16/1952 Troubles Joan Shaw instrumentalist, guitar  
Decca 82959 6/16/1952 Better be on my way Joan Shaw instrumentalist, guitar  
Decca 82960 6/16/1952 Until you came along Joan Shaw instrumentalist, guitar  
(Results 1-25 of 42 records)

Citation

Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Best, Skeeter," accessed May 20, 2022, https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/304206.

Best, Skeeter. (2022). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved May 20, 2022, from https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/304206.

"Best, Skeeter." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2022. Web. 20 May 2022.

DAHR Persistent Identifier

URI: https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/304206

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