In the highly competitive music market it is not easy for a
flutist to assert herself. This also applies to the field of
smooth jazz, where other flutists such as Althea Rene or Ragan
Whiteside are striving for points of fame alongside Kim Scott.
Alabama based flutist Kim Scott knows the music business well
enough after her albums Crossing Over (2011), Rite of
Passage (2013) and Southern Heat (2016) to be aware
of what matters. Strengthened by the innovative record label
Innervision Records and perfectly connected with an exquisite team
of accompanying musicians and producers, her new album Free To
Be (2019) has all ingredients to become a winner.
The credits includes familiar names and distinct stars of the
smooth jazz scene. As with her previous albums, main participant
is producer Kelvin “Wu10” Wooten, who is also involved on
keyboards and programming. Further musicians on selected tracks
are Sean Michael Ray (bass), West Byrd (keyboards), Eric Essix
(guitar), Jazmin Ghent (tenor sax), Jonathan Fritzen (piano),
James Lloyd (various instruments), James “PJ” Spraggins
(keyboards, drums, percussion and programming), Jaden Scott
(keyboards and programming), Cameron Ross (alto sax), and Dimitri
Turner (instrument programming).
The album contains a well-balanced mix of originals and covers,
whereby Kim attaches importance to a good cooperation with the
respective musicians. The starting title song Free To Be
is for example a collaboration between Kim and keyboardist West
Byrd. The overall appealing song has a special hook included, a
perfect synth bass line inspired by The Gap Band (Outstanding).
Kim's pairing with rising sax star Jazmin Ghent is the icing on
The second tune Emerge is the first single release of the
album. Accordingly, the theme is extremely tough, especially as it
gains strength through the short-phase repetition. Jonathan
Fritzen takes up the theme on the piano to continue it together
Keyboardist James Lloyd, founding member of the legendary group
Pieces Of A Dream, is the creator of the third composition No
Worries. Kim's scatting along the main melody reminds me of
Suzanne Vega's Tom's Diner. The lightness of being
perfectly captured in tones.
The Look Of Love is a popular song by composer Burt
Bacharach with lyrics later added by Hal David. Unforgettable is
the version by Dusty Springfield, which appeared in the 1967 James
Bond film Casino Royale. Kim serves a very heartfelt
flute melody standing in strong contrast to the orchestral hit by
You And Me, a collaboration by Kim and James “PJ” Spraggins,
brings the spirit of groove into the forefront of R&B. Kim
showcases her qualities as vocalist. But when Kim takes the flute
in a funky landscape like Take It To The Rink, she
exposes her real power.
Best Part is a song by Canadian singer Daniel Caesar and
American singer H.E.R. released in 2017 as a part of Caesar's
album Freudian. Kim's transformation is melt-in-the-mouth
soul lard in a superb arrangement. J's Groove is named
after Kim's son, who is also listed as co-author and keyboardist.
Kim presents a multilayered flute array in overdub procedure.
The Prayer was written by Canadian composer legend David
Foster for the 1998 film Quest for Camelot. The song
became quickly a showpiece for duets of famous singers like Celine
Dion with Josh Groban and Andrea Bocelli or Andrea Bocelli and
Katherine McPhee, who now married David Foster. Kim captures the
essence of this striking song, that seems to be formally written
for the flute. She is accompanied by Cameron Ross on the alto
saxophone as duet partner. Extraordinary!
Kim Scott's phenomenal talent as flutist can't find a more
beautiful setting than with her new album Free To Be.
Whatever genre she's moving in, she's working it out.
Buy the album in all stores
Title: Free To Be
Artist: Kim Scott
Genre: Smooth Jazz
Label: Innervision Records
1) Free To Be (4:31)
2) Emerge (4:16)
3) No Worries (4:36)
4) The Look Of Love (4:50)
5) You And Me (3:56)
6) Take It
To The Rink (4:20)
7) Best Part (4:00)
8) J's Groove (3:40)
9) The Prayer (4:28)
Rite Of Passage