Sophie Ellis Bextor on music, men and motherhood

My guest this week has always been a self-starter. From flogging Blue Peter badges in the playground to earn a few extra quid to joining theaudience while she was still at school (famously telling her mum, ‘Sod school I’m going on a tour with NME’), Sophie Ellis Bextor has been doing it her own way for a very long time. 

Famous almost before she was born – thanks to her mum, Blue Peter presenter Janet Ellis – she’s made seven albums, aced Strictly, had five children (all boys, aged 2-17) and given us two enormous dance hits in Groovejet (If This Ain’t Love) with Spiller and Murder On The Dance Floor. And that was before she brought some levity to lockdown with her sequin-strewn Kitchen Disco.

Now Sophie has written a memoir, Spinning Plates. Named for her podcast, it’s an unexpectedly candid and down to earth look at music, men and motherhood, and how her attitude to all three has changed as she’s got older. 

Sophie joined me from the kitchen of Kitchen Disco fame to talk about giving voice to her 17-year-old self, reshaping her career in her 40s, the art of bouncing back and learning when to say no.

• You can buy all the books mentioned in this podcast at, including Spinning Plates by Sophie Ellis Bextor, and the book that inspired this podcast, The Shift: how I lost and found myself after 40 - and you can too, by me!

• You can listen to Sophie's podcast, Spinning Plates with Sophie Ellis Bextor, on apple, acast, Spotify, amazon or wherever you get your podcasts.

The Shift (on life after 40) with Sam Baker is created and hosted by Sam Baker and edited by Emily Sandford (isn't she brilliant?!). If you enjoyed this podcast, please rate/review/follow as it really does help other people find us. And let me know what you think on twitter @sambaker or instagram @theothersambaker.

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