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#FCCreators: Podcasts, playlists and uplifting female voices with Millie Cotton

Author Editor - 6 minute read

Last summer, we launched our Community Connection campaign – a global initiative where we swapped French for ‘Community’, supporting and celebrating our local and wider communities during these strange times.


A year on and community continues to be more important than ever. So this season, as a branch of our Community Connection campaign, we’re celebrating and putting the spotlight on creative talents, artists and inspiring individuals, from Europe and the US. We will be sharing their stories, talents, passions and give a behind the scenes look into their industry and life, forming our French Connection community of creators, #FCCreators.


To launch our #FCCreators campaign and celebrate International Women’s Day, we caught up with DJ and Women in Music podcast host, Millie Cotton, to delve into her creative passions of fashion, music and podcasting, as well as discussing the importance of uplifting female voices in the music industry. Plus, Millie has curated a Spotify playlist for you to listen to at home (or on your daily walks) featuring tracks from her Women In Music podcast guests, as well as some up and coming artists. 



Following a challenging 2020 for creatives, how have your overcome this and kept motivated with your DJing and podcast? 

Looking back at the beginning of this year and last year, I’m really proud of the podcast content I put out on both the podcast and the socials. Seeing as we were all sat at home for a lot of the year, lockdown made reaching guests more accessible too, and I spoke to guests I’d only dreamed of having on.

Up until recently, I did everything from reaching out to guests, research, editing, and graphics to the socials. As the show has grown, the impact has grown, and it’s the shares and direct messages that kept me feeling like I was creating something purposeful, which is always motivating.

DJing has been a little different - I’ve found that quite a challenge to stay motivated! My last in real life gig was a year ago this week, which is bizarre. I’ve done some lives here and there and created Spotify playlists, but on the whole, I can’t wait to get back to playing out in the real world again.


From the five outfit & songs combinations you’ve curated together for this collaboration, which is your favourite & why? 

It has to be the cream shirt jacket, crop top and high waisted jeans combination. Those jeans with boots make me feel all the things!




What is your creative process when putting a mix together? 

I usually start with one new song and create a mix around it. I love to use a combination of old and new music to create a journey of sorts with the mix. You don’t want to start on your best track and have nowhere better to go from there.


Who are your favourite female DJ’s and what are your favourite female run music spaces or club nights? 

I had Sam Divine on Women in Music last year; I was so excited to have secured the interview, I wasn’t even expecting her to read my email. She sits in a space between underground and commercial - it’s something I aspire to! Sam has her label; she presents shows for both Kiss and Defected Records too. Honey Dijon has been a favourite of mine for years also. She has this insane energy that she brings to her sets; they’re always really unique. Jayda G, Effy, TSHA, Sally C - there are loads!



Tell us a little about your Women in Music podcast...

Women in Music podcast is an inclusive platform to elevate female voices by sharing acknowledged women's tales and career insights. The podcast explores what they do, how they got there and the day to day of getting it done. From artists to tour managers to sound engineers, each episode is a frank conversation with great music makers and enablers about the industry. The podcast offers education about their careers and the weird and wonderful routes into them.

Your podcast elevates female voices in the music industry, how important is this to you? 

It's so important! I couldn't find a podcast with the information I was looking for, so I decided to create it myself! After years of attending club nights run and played by men, I finally came across a DJ, a woman, and quickly realised my passion was a career possibility. I would have begun at a much younger age if I had known this career was an option, which is why the podcast is important. I'm hoping that putting all of these brilliant women and their stories in one place might encourage younger women to pursue their dreams and realise that they're possible. 

What is your creative process when creating each episode of your podcast?

For each season, I sit down and write a list of the women I’d love to have on, then one by one, I reach out to them, whether that’s direct or through their management. I spread out the interviews over a couple of weeks, edit and create the content, and then there’s a bulk of episodes recorded and ready to go to release one a week. I try and include more elusive job roles, and then around half the episodes from the season are made up of breaking artists.


What advice would you give someone wanting to pursue their own podcast?

Having an exact niche is a great place to start. It’s so important to know why you’re doing what you’re doing. For the first season, I knew I wanted to find out more about women within the music industry, but I hadn’t worked out the reasons why. For the second season, I realised my real purpose and intent for why I was doing what I was doing. As I previously mentioned, there was an underrepresentation of women in clubs when I was in my early twenties, and I had no clue it was viable, as a woman, to be a DJ. Sometimes you need to see someone else doing it to realise you can do it!


What are your top 5 tips for starting a podcast?

1. A podcast ‘mission statement’ is a great place to start.

2. There’s no need to fork out on expensive equipment straight away.

3. Don’t ask, don’t get! I’ve only had two guests say no so far.

4. Eye-catching branding - canva is a straightforward tool to use for this.

5. Work out who your target audience is, and the rest will follow.


Other than your Women in Music podcast, which other podcasts would you recommend?

Annie Mac’s Changes is incredible, as is Elizabeth Day’s How To Fail. There’s a wide range of guests and topics covered on both podcasts, and they’re such brilliant interviewers. Adrienne Herbet’s Power Hour is another great listen; it’s intriguing learning how various guests structure their days and routines.


From your podcast to DJing, what are your plans for 2021? 

One thing I learnt in lockdown last year was to try and chill out a bit. I tend to put a lot of pressure on myself. I was knackered at the point of lockdown last year because of always looking ahead to the next thing and never really appreciating achievements as they were happening. I want to keep this mindset as the world opens back up, and everything else is a bonus!


#FCCreators x Millie Cotton Spotify Playlist

Millie has curated a Spotify playlist for you to listen to at home (or on your daily walks) featuring tracks from her Women In Music podcast guests, as well as some up and coming artists. 


Listen to this playlist now



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