ASFA teacher and Birmingham native Kim Scott tops Billboard Smooth Jazz chart

Flutist and Birmingham native Kim Scott reached number one on the Billboard Smooth Jazz Chart in June 2019. Photo by Pat Byington for Bham Now

Longtime Alabama School of Fine Arts music department chair, teacher and flutist Kim Scott has topped the Billboard Smooth Jazz chart with her hit single “Emerge.”

The number one Billboard hit has also topped the Grove Jazz Radiowave Chart.

Kim played the song for Bham Now this week:

Meet Kim Scott

A native of Birmingham, Scott went to ASFA as a high school student and later got her music degree at the University of Alabama, learning her craft from a renowned flutist. She received a Masters in Pedagogy and Performance at Oklahoma State University and was ready to embark on a doctorate degree program at Eastman, the world’s premiere school of music.

It was before she left for Eastman, ASFA offered Scott an opportunity to teach flute at the school. She jumped at the chance to join her alma mater, and has been teaching there ever since for 19 years.

Along with teaching, she has chaired the ASFA music department for 14 years. The program presently has 60 plus students, 4 full-time faculty and 15 adjunct faculty. Scott also conducts the school’s orchestra.

Reaching her Dreams – Leading by Example

Becoming a chart-topping musician has provided Scott an opportunity to show her students first-hand, they can reach their dreams in music as a teacher and performer.

“Seeing how my students are responding, I know it sounds cliche but – whatever your dream is – if you can develop a plan and have the work ethic, you can make it happen,” said Scott in and interview with Bham Now.

“If you have that goal and desire there is nothing you can’t do.”

She added. “I’ve always been that person to walk that path. I wanted to be a flutist, and people said you can’t make money playing the flute. Playing the flute got me to where I am. It got me this job. It got me 4 records and a number one single on Billboard. You have a dream, you put in the work.”

New Album and Single

Scott will be releasing her fourth album titled, “Free to Be” in July. The single “Emerge” which has maintained its top position on the charts this summer will be on the album. Throughout this summer and fall, Scott will be supporting her new album and number one hit touring the country.

“I’m seeing now the recognition you can get from being on top of the list” said Scott. “You get more job offers, performance opportunities and you can charge more (laughs).”

According to Scott, fortunately many of her concerts are at Jazz festivals which tend to make it easier to schedule during the school year. In the coming months, she will be playing in California, Florida and New York. In the Fall, she will be performing at the Alys Stephens Center Emerge Jazz Festival in Birmingham on September 13-14.

Pre-Release of Her New Album on June 21 at the Perfect Note

Birmingham will be in for a special treat on Friday, June 21st. On that day, at 8:30 in the evening, Scott has scheduled a CD pre-release concert at the Perfect Note in Hoover.


  • Longtime conservationist. Former Executive Director at the Alabama Environmental Council and Wild South. Publisher of the Bama Environmental News for more than 18 years. Career highlights include playing an active role in the creation of Alabama's Forever Wild program, Little River Canyon National Preserve, Dugger Mountain Wilderness, preservation of special places throughout the East through the Wilderness Society and the strengthening (making more stringent) the state of Alabama's cancer risk and mercury standards.