Arielle Free

“Playing new places to people I’ve never played before. I love the challenge of seeing what they vibe off and what they like. Changing things up adding in fresh new releases alongside the staples and then adding my tracks in. I just love it. I love exceeding people’s expectations.” Arielle Free, Wonderland Mag 2022

Radio 1’s Arielle Free kicks off the Lady Of The House UK Club Tour with a headline set at Bournemouth’s Halo club on Friday March 11th, and the first LoTH Cultural Exhibition launches on International Womens’ Day March 8th at Bristol’s Lost Horizon. Brimming with high octane energy, the respected BBC Radio 1 Presenter/DJ and now Music Producer, Arielle Free, recently released her infectious feel-good disco house groove ‘Soul Full’ (produced with Bristol duo, Mortimer and featuring vocalist Joe Killington) and is joined on the first date by Alex Mills and Modacode. The Scottish DJ broadcasts every Monday to Thursday on BBC Radio 1 from 4-7 introducing new music with a hefty nod to rave and disco.


You’re best known for your DJ-ing career (both in clubs and on Radio 1) and you’re headlining the 1st Lady of The House Club tour date at Halo in Bournemouth on Friday March 11th. What is exciting you most about the upcoming Lady of the house event?

I’ve been a huge advocate of there needing to be more representation of women across the board and particularly within the electronic music world. Programming of festival bills and line ups are one area especially I will call people out. Being a part of a tour that is promoting and focusing on the ladies helps people to see women can sell tickets and not only that but also put on a bloody great night.

How did you get involved with Lady of the House?

Laila reached out to my on instagram and asked me to contribute to the Lady of the House book. I actually was quite surprised but was so happy to be involved and it meant a lot to be considered as someone fitting to have a voice, alongside so many of my heroes and inspirations.

Can you tell us how you got into DJ-ing? What were your first big breaks?

I was trying to make my way through the broadcasting world and was offered the opportunity to be the drive time host of Ministry of Sound’s Radio station. It was an online station that had a large audience not just here in the UK but globally. I had dabbled in DJ-ing but I was definitely not at a level where I could host one of the biggest dance shows for one of the biggest dance labels in the world. So I took the job on the premise that they would help show me the ropes on the decks properly. Don’t get my wrong I’d been DJ-ing nights and events a lot by this time ( fading in and out ha ha) but I’d always wanted to be at a level where I could hold my own in the club and at festivals. I knew the music inside and out I just hadn’t drummed up the courage to try knowing everything on the decks. I’m so grateful for that job because it was there I really discovered just how much I loved not only curating the music but playing out for people to dance to.

What attracted you to building a career in the dance music industry?

I love the music and I love the club, simple as that. You’ll never not see me on the dance floor when I’m out. I’ve always had this weird obsession of music completely taking over me and getting lost in it. It’s like a natural reflex action for me to start dancing when I hear the faintest of beats. I’m terrible to walk down the street with!

Do you feel that being female or identifying as a woman is a barrier to getting work in the music industry?

Not a barrier but often I feel we have to attack things differently. So that we are taken seriously or can hold our own in a space that can be often be intimidating. If I see something that tells me I can’t do it because I’m a women it only spurs me on. What’s great is that there are now so many more allies who stand by our side and try to lift us up rather than put us down. Also there are women all the way through the industry now, from producers, managers, lighting technicians, stage managers, agents, artwork designers, sound engineers, big bad bosses it’s so wonderful. Within my work my immediate teams are all women bar two. How brilliant is that?! Now we just need those with a more prehistoric attitude to get on board. 

How do projects like Lady of the House help women get into the industry, both in the way of confidence and community and practically?

The actively support female talent from the ground up. They have a platform in which they shout loud about the ladies out there, give advice and support to those grafting and they create spaces where we can not only play out to crowds but also become friends. 

Who are your heroes/heroines and other influences? 

I think we can all agree Annie Mac is instrumental in paving the way for all of us. For years she has held her own as not only a headline DJ but the go to curator, music breaker and dance music radio pioneer. I remember chatting to a male peer and he pointed out to me that Annie did it all whilst being one of the only female dance DJ’s in the industry for nearly 15years. Yet its because of her we all felt like we could do it too. Don’t get me wrong Nimone, Lisa Lashes, Smokin Jo, Paulette, Annie Nightingale and Sister Bliss are just a few of the others out there to do it first but for me as a broadcaster and DJ it was seeing what Annie was doing that made me feel that I could maybe do it too.

Who have you loved working with most so far? A favourite DJ highlight?

In terms of DJ-ing I owe Eats Everything a lot as he made me buck up and be the best I could be. Annie gave me some of the most sound advice when I was in a bit of an awkward business predicament. She also was the first to support my music on the radio. She’s a queen. Production wise, Icarus, Gotsome, Waze, Jansons, LP Giobbi, TSHA, Chloe Robinson, Danny Howard, Shadow Child all these guys have helped with advice, taught me the skills in studios sessions and shared some of the most valuable tips. I’m still so new to that side of things but I want to be the best I can be I know it’ll take time to get to where I want in terms of being a complete master at those skills. These things can take decades I just need to have the confidence to keep going at it.

Your recent single ‘Soul Full’ is still going down a storm, can you tell us a bit more about what you are up to at the moment?

Well four days a week you’ll find me hosting the early breakfast show on Radio 1. Seven days a week you’ll hear me broadcasting on the Radio 1 Dance stream. Alongside that I’m making more music, gigging, recording a new podcast series, trying to get my label up and running properly and booking acts and venues for my club night ‘Free Your Mind.’ I also host a lot of live events too although I have to be careful about how many of those I do as my alarm goes off at 3am. My radio show is too important not to be full of energy for the early brekkie crew! I feel really fortunate to be able to work in so many areas within the music and broadcasting worlds.

What’s coming next for you? 

From April onwards there are DJ gigs every weekend. I have a big Ibiza announcement to make which I’m sooooooooooo excited about. I’ll finally be a part of Radio 1’s Big Weekend. Its a running joke that even though I’ve been on Radio 1 for four years I’ve never actually made it on site to a Big Weekend. That will be a huge moment for me and the Radio 1 family, especially as we’ve not been able to do it for the last two years. Returning to the most magical festival in the world and supporting one of my heroes at a gig I couldn’t even dream of. There’s so many surreal moments coming I’m still trying to take it all in. I’m looking forward to getting more music out there, getting more Free Your mind nights out across the UK and having the label release and give a platform for as many artists as I can. 

5 tracks that are always in your box?

Great question!

 ‘You Make Me Feel’ Soulwax for Despacio Remix – Sylvester

‘Stars’ Cosmic Energy Dub – Honey Dijon

‘Strings of Life’ Danny Krivit Edit – Soul Central 

‘Soul Sacrifice’ – Dombreskys 

‘Mesmerising’ – Cinthie 

Current 5 tracks that are hot for you?

‘Right 2 Left’ – Mele, Diplo Busta Rhymes 

‘Nasty’ – Catz n Dogs feat Kiddy Smile 

‘Technicolour Kenny’ – Arielle Free 

‘Hey Mamacita’ – DJ Lora

‘Sonic Boom’ – Guy Mac


Arielle Free headlines the 1st Lady Of The House UK Club Tour date on Friday March 11th 2022 at Halo, Bournemouth. She is joined by Alex Mills, Modacode (Southampton), Tee Tee & The Yard Woman. Tickets available at
Event Page:

The inaugural Lady Of The House Cultural Exhibition launches on International Women’s Day Tuesday March 8th at Lost Horizon, Bristol. Tickets available at 

Event Page: