Southwest Feminists Reunite ~ “40th Anniversary Event” • Women Woven: Interview with Meg Fox, Ka McMudie, Judith Weiser, and Doreen Dobzewitz

Dublin Core

Title

Southwest Feminists Reunite ~ “40th Anniversary Event” • Women Woven: Interview with Meg Fox, Ka McMudie, Judith Weiser, and Doreen Dobzewitz

Subject

lesbian, Tucson, activism, history, feminists, 1970s, collectives, media

Description

Southwest Feminists Reunite ~ “40th Anniversary Event” • Women Woven: Interview with Meg Fox, Ka McMudie, Judith Weiser, and Doreen Dobzewitz 11:59

Southwest Feminists Reunite celebrated the 40th anniversary of the Southwest Feminist Festival Retreat held north of Tucson. That powerful experience in March 1973 and the dynamic creativity and political action that followed sparked feminists and lesbian feminists to reinvent their lives and organize for change over the next four decades. This collection consists of oral histories and digital scans of photographs from the past 40 years.

Creator

Jamie A. Lee, Project Director, Arizona Queer Archives
Anastasia Freyermuth, video producer

Source

MiniDV tapes recorded on Panasonic DVX-100A digital video camera

Publisher

Jamie A. Lee, Project Director, Arizona Queer Archives

Date

16 March 2013

Contributor

Southwest Feminists Reunite, Lavina Tomer, and Deborah Dobson

Rights

Rights given to the Arizona LGBTQ Storytelling Project and the Arizona Queer Archives

Relation

Southwest Feminists Reunite

Format

H.264 300Kbps streaming QuickTime movie, 320 x 240

Women Woven:
11:59 and 26.8MB

Language

English

Type

MovingImage

Alternative Title

Interview with Meg Fox, Ka McMudie, Judith Weiser, and Doreen Dobowitz

Date Available

6 January 2014

Date Created

16 March 2013

Rights Holder

Rights given to the Arizona LGBTQ Storytelling Project and the Arizona Queer Archives
Jamie A. Lee, Project Director, Arizona Queer Archives

Oral History Item Type Metadata

Interviewer

Jamie A. Lee

Interviewee

Meg Fox, Ka McMudie, Judith Weiser, and Doreen Dobowitz

Transcription

Transcription by Courtney Martinez



Persons Interviewed:
Meg Fox, Ka McMudie, Judith Weiser, Doreen Dobowitz

Interviewer:

So, if we could start with you Doreen, and just say your name and we’ll go around for the camera…

Unknown Speaker: Are we all gonna be on camera?

Interviewer:

…so we have everybody’s names and then we’ll start talking about Women Woven…

Doreen Dobowitz:
Doreen Dobwitz..aka.Dori

Interviewer:

Here

Ka McMudie:
Katherine McMudie aka Ka Mudie

Judith Weiser:
Judith Wiser aka Judith Wiser

Meg Fox:
Meg Fox…pretty much what you see is what you get

Interviewer:

So what is how Women Woven

Ka McMudie:
Women Woven is a…was a production company producing women’s events…pretty soon women’s concerts would bring mainly a levy of artist here from California and produce women’s concerts, sometimes two the same night…sometime one the same night….duh…(laughs, room laughs).

I think that means there were 3 a night…

Ka McMudie:
I can’t figure that one out...anyways uhm…we would hold concerts for the community. There was a lot of work involved…

[Interruption]

Ka McMudie:
…and there was a lot of work involved and there other people involved, there was Dash, uhm Oquitatus or Dandelion Oquitatus, there was Janna Leal, and

Group: Cindy Elliot was here…

Ka McMudie: and uhm…anybody else?

Judith Weiser: Other people…

Doreen Dobowitz:
Edie..wasn’t Edie involved?

Ka McMudie:
Edie was involved from…she was the owner of the woman’s bookstore Antigone and so she was very much…sold tickets, she hung up posters in her bookstore…

Doreen Dobowitz:
She was kind of our marketing person…

Ka McMudie: Yeah…she was our marketing person.

Meg Fox:
You know…a lot of things were fluid (group laughs). Personnel was really fluid...yeah...it was pretty fluid.

Ka McMudie:
But everybody had like jobs…like you did (points to Meg Fox) the lights.

Meg Fox:
Such as they were, I mean really they were clip on flood lights.

Ka McMudie: Yeah, but you did’em.

Meg Fox: I did do them.

Ka McMudie: I didn’t know how to do’em.

Meg Fox: I didn’t really either.

Judith Weiser: But she does now.

Ka McMudie: But Cindy did the posters.

Doreen Dobowitz:
Yeah, we did posters…

Meg Fox:
You know it’s like we were saying this story all day, we were making it up as we went along and thus we don’t remember a whole lot aside from the other issues, but there’s this certain amount of we were just kinda doing it…

Judith Weiser:
I remember sitting in a circle on the floor in your living room (Looks at DD) and saying, “Okay what do we have to do now, what do we have to do? You take posters here, she’s gonna make the posters, your gonna take’em around, we gotta get the tickets printed, we gotta, gotta, gotta…” It was very grassrootsy kinda.

Meg Fox:
It was and so the women’s music scene was you know, at that point…

Ka McMudie: Was very new…

Meg Fox: But it was hot.

Ka McMudie: It was hot…

Doreen Dobowitz:
Yeah…

Meg Fox: It was hot and so were the singers frankly.

Ka McMudie: and it brought men and women to the concerts.

Group: No, wait a minute…that first one…

Judith Weiser: We need to start….

Meg Fox: Cut the camera….

Ka McMudie: Yeah, yeah right…

Judith Weiser:
For the sake of the archive and being correct, an article that Doreen had and found was brought and scanned, it was in the paper here and our first concert at Made Christian, we said, “All Women Welcome,” on the poster and men came to the…

Interruption (Group laughter)

Judith Weiser:
…Uhm a man from Phoenix, his girlfriend or wife bought them tickets they didn’t notice, “all women welcome” they came all the way down from Phoenix; I read the article, and it was quite a bru-ha-ha because they were turned away and he had lived in Tucson and been a big supporter of abortion rights and a lot of our causes and it was very controversial and we had to start talking about things then. And as I said in an earlier interview, separatism and our own space was really needed in the beginning when the movement was young, we needed to get together on our own and get our power…and then you know…then you branch out into the world and you take yourself out into the world….

Meg Fox:
…but there was a problem, which is that some of us had male children and it was not pretty…it was not and you know…people were you know…I was a separatist at the time myself, if I have to look back on it in twenty-twenty I’m a little like, “Ewwww,”…


Ka McMudie: …Why’d I do that….

Meg Fox: ….that was…I think you know…we hurt people…

Judith Weiser: We hurt ourselves

Meg Fox:
I don’t know about that. I’m pretty clear that….it was what we thought was the right thing to do and you know…

Ka McMudie: It’s what we were going through.

Meg Fox:
And that’s you know…it’s messy, life is messy and we were kinda messy…

Ka McMudie: And we lived through the mess.

Judith Weiser:
And also another…this is a historical factoid…we produced a singer, Cerny, who was a separatist when she found out that our sound person was a man she said she would not go on. We had a hall full of people, we did not know anything…we learned our lesson that we have to have contracts with people…

Meg Fox: Yeah, there was that problem…

Judith Weiser:
And there she was in the green room here at the sanctuary of the church with a hall full of people saying, “I’m not gonna go on with that man in the room.” This man, (looks to MF) do you remember Bill Bland…from workshop music?

Meg Fox: Yes!

Judith Weiser:
He was our friend. Women didn’t know how to mix sound yet and do that stuff. You know we had just formed that…the women’s company and learning non-traditional skills, but he came in and he donated his time and his talents and his equipment and we didn’t know what to do about it. And finally, I think you negotiated with her Ka….

Ka McMudie: Yeah I did…

Judith Weiser:
There was one song she insisted her leave the room for, so we went and talked to him and he was cool…but you know…this is what we were going through then. Now we could probably find a woman to do our sound maybe not…

Meg Fox: What do you mean probably?

Judith Weiser: Probably?

Meg Fox: Oh my God

Judith Weiser: You live in Seattle, we live here

Meg Fox:
No, I just think you don’t know…I think the women…it’s still a non-traditional skill…

Ka McMudie: It is a non-traditional skill…

Meg Fox:
(looks at interviewer) what you’re doing is…but women are claiming…you know...first of all…nah, that’s a long conversation about sound technology…

Ka McMudie: Yeah, we don’t need that…

Meg Fox:
It’s not that interesting. Yes you could…you just have to advertise.

Judith Weiser:
You just have to find…but then…we probably couldn’t have or we didn’t know…alright, shut up.

Meg Fox: We didn’t know.

Judith Weiser: We didn’t know.

Ka McMudie: But at that time Olivia which was a women’s…

Group: Music

Ka McMudie:
women’s music production company was just starting with their artists so they were wanting for us to produce. So not only were they tapping on our shoulders but we were tapping on theirs. So it got that Women Woven was having a fairly good reputation. So we produced Holly Nier, we produced Meg Christian, we produced…

Judith Weiser: Teresa Tral

Ka McMudie: Teresa Tral, we produced Kris Williamson

Doreen Dobowitz:
Robert Flower

Ka McMudie:
Robert Flower…We produced…remember the band En Izquierda, BeBe Chrouch and you (nudges DD) you helped me with them because they were always in the bathroom.

Judith Weiser: No, no, no, no, no

Ka McMudie: Yes, yes, yes

Judith Weiser: No, really?

Ka McMudie: Yup,

Doreen Dobowitz:
Yup, Yup

Judith Weiser: We don’t need to talk about this do we?

Ka McMudie: Yes, no we don’t need to bring this up

Judith Weiser:
Because one of their members is moving back into the business so let’s…(sound effect)

Ka McMudie:
Okay, so we won’t do that, but anyways…there were always…you know we learned the hard way cause there’s always something up that we didn’t know and they said, “Now your suppose to have this,” and we said, “Oh…

Judith Weiser: Where do we get that?

Ka McMudie: And we just look at each other…

Doreen Dobowitz:
And we all kind of fumbled around until we figured it out and got what we needed to get.

Meg Fox:
But we had to use people more than once…I mean we got…we had a few years of seasons going…

Group: Yeah

Meg Fox:
And you know we were talking about this earlier but you know the bars…but this was kinda a social thing for women, where people could, where we could go and have sort of our art scene. We’d have women’s art, women’s music…

Ka McMudie: And then we had a dance afterwards…remember?

Meg Fox: We had a big dance.

Doreen Dobowitz:
A lot of times we had a dance…yes.

Ka McMudie: In fact the dance was here

Group: Yup, yeah, right

Judith Weiser:
Because we had the concerts in the sanctuary building and the dances was probably in here.

Ka McMudie:
Yeah and I mean, it’s so incredible that we’re doing this here and the dances were here because we would rent this out Yu-Yu was very used to us and they were very used to you know…I mean so we had no problem with the contract here and we’re all on first name basis, you know it was great. You know we could rent a place with no problems. The problems we had met were mostly with the artists you know and us not knowing what certain terms meant in contracts…we really had to like study these things. And for us to learn and become more professional at it cause we were really just sort of laid back like, “Oh well, who are we gonna produce now?”

Doreen Dobowitz:
We’ll figure it out…

Interviewer: What years were these?

Group: (Laughs) ’76, ’77


Judith Weiser:
’76 was BeBe Chrouch cause I was just passing through town and happened to show up at that concert.

Group: ’76,’74-80, ’76 to at least ’78, ‘79

Meg Fox:
This is really embarrassing but I’m figuring out by who I was sleeping with…at least ’79, yeah…Rebecca…’79 yeah…and we were still doing concerts.

Judith Weiser: (To MF) You’re not embarrassed.

Meg Fox:
No…Rebecca…oh…yup. But you know…you probably if you’ve read any stuff about the women’s music with all the women’s music festivals there’s really sort of this wonderful dynamic thing that was going on…some of these women, not a lot but some of them entered mainstream music.

Group: Umh-uh

Ka McMudie: Polly Mirdu…she’s got a new…

Judith Weiser: Vicky Randell

Ka McMudie: Yeah, Vicky Randall, she’s got a new album out

Judith Weiser: The Tonight Show

Meg Fox: (Laughs)

Judith Weiser: Vicky Randall ended up on the tonight show

Meg Fox: Good for her.

Judith Weiser: Doing percussion…so you know. Good for her…

Ka McMudie: that’s great…

Interviewer:
Well that’s cool, Is there any last thing that you think the archives should know?


Ka McMudie:
Just that for me I never thought that….I thought it was great that we were bringing music to the community and I just thought it was fantastic but I never thought of it as a big thing you know. And Edie and I would always go for walks when the music was going on.

Judith Weiser: You would?

Ka McMudie: Yeah.

Judith Weiser: You wouldn’t stay at the concerts?

Ka McMudie: No, I was too nervous. So Edie always took me for walks.

Judith Weiser:
That’s really interesting…I didn’t know that. Who’s watching the store?

Ka McMudie: Ha…I don’t know.

Meg Fox: The store watches itself.

Judith Weiser: Okay. Cool Beans.

Meg Fox: Wow are we done?

[End of Interview]

Files

Citation

Jamie A. Lee, Project Director, Arizona Queer Archives Anastasia Freyermuth, video producer, “Southwest Feminists Reunite ~ “40th Anniversary Event” • Women Woven: Interview with Meg Fox, Ka McMudie, Judith Weiser, and Doreen Dobzewitz,” Arizona Queer Archives, accessed July 22, 2018, http://azqueerarchives.org/items/show/18.