Life Along the Streetcar with Tom Heath from The Heath Team Nova Home Loans

On this week’s episode, we’re going to talk with Peter Reese, Founder of Woven Productions here in Tucson, AZ. He’s making a documentary series about those who’ve overcome adversity through the power of creating art. Learn about this and much more on today’s show!

Today is December 2nd, my name is Tom Heath and you’re listening to “Life Along the Streetcar”.

Each and every Sunday our focus is on Social, Cultural and Economic impacts in Tucson’s Urban Core and we shed light on hidden gems everyone should know about. From A Mountain to the U of A and all stops in between. You get the inside track- right here on 99.1 FM, streaming on DowntownRadio.org- we’re also available on your iPhone or Android using our very own Downtown Radio app. Reach us by email [email protected] — interact with us on Facebook at LifeAlongTheStreetcar and follow us on Twitter @StreetcarLife

Our intro music is by Ryanhood and we exit with music from Nikola Conte and Gianluca Petrea, “People Need People.”

Transcript (Unedited)

Good morning. It’s another beautiful Sunday in the old pueblo and you’re listening to KTT Tucson. Thanks for spending a part of your brunch hour with us on your downtown Tucson community sponsored rock and roll radio station.

On this week’s episode, we’re going to talk with Peter Reese. He’s making a documentary series about those who’ve overcome adversity through the power of creating art. Today’s, December 4. My name is Tom Heath and you’re listening to life along the streetcar. Each and every Sunday, our focuses on social, cultural and economic impacts in Tucson’s urban core. And we shed light on hidden gems everyone should know about, from a mountain to the University of Arizona and all stops in between. You get the inside track right here on 99.1 FM [email protected] also available on your iPhone or Android with our very own Downtown Radio Tucson app. Or by using the Tune In app on the show, you can reach us with [email protected] We’re on Instagram and Facebook.

We have podcasts everywhere and information about the show about us and about our newest book is on our website, life along the Streetcar.org. December is upon us. The year end is fast approaching. All kinds of things happening in the Old Pueblo, many events to COVID And today I wanted to talk a little bit about taking that mental health break. The station has a focus on removing the stigma around seeking help with mental health issues. And from its inception, the station has tried to bring light to some of these issues. And if you stay tuned to the station here later on today, you’ll have Ty Logan with heavy mental. And with that in mind, I wanted to present with you an interview I did with a gentleman named Peter Reese. He’s working on a documentary series started with himself and is now moving to others about overcoming adversity, dealing with challenges in your life through the power of creating art. I ran into him at a Creative Mornings session a few months ago. He was looking for

people to tell the story or provide the names of those that maybe have overcome something in their life and used art as sort of the therapy that got them through there. So I reached out to him. We talked by phone a few days ago. His name is Peter Reese and his documentary series is what made the difference.

Tom. My name is Peter Reese. My company is woven production. I’ve been here in Tucson for about five years and really my journey has directed me toward telling stories that are kind of universal, even beyond Tucson and beyond any one location and one situation, to understanding in people’s lives what will make a difference for them. Particularly people who are struggling with addiction or relationship problems or physical challenges. What are the things that will help them down the road? And those are things we can discover individually and as a community. And I want to document those in a series of short films that we can all share.

And so tell me really quickly about Woven. It’s a production company or it’s a branding company. What do you do with Woven?

Well, Woven Productions is really a genesis tom from the work that I’ve done in creating content and doing documentary filmmaking in the last 15 years. And I have done a lot of producing and directing and appearing in but I really decided I wanted to tell stories that I thought were important and so I created Woven Productions to be able to do that.

Okay, and so who is a typical client of Woven? Is it yourself or do you hire out to companies to help tell their stories?

I’ve got one major client up in the Denver area that I’m kind of on staff telling their stories of their company and their products and how they’re used. I’ve done a lot of work in travel and tourism but Woven Productions, the core of it are the kinds of stories that you and I are talking about today. And I’ve gotten corporate sponsorship for those in terms of not only products and technology but then also helping to get these stories out there. So I see the family growing over time to get more involvement among companies and organizations that really want to dig in on the stories that are going to help people down the road of life.

Okay.

That sort of lays some good foundation here. It seems like there’s been a very interesting journey. My guess is that brought you to where we are today.

Well, we’re going to hit on some of those things probably today but it’s come from a phase, kind of a phase of journey of life and those phases have include some pretty singular experiences I was fortunate to have. That included working internationally, working in the United States with inmate populations, with people who are struggling in rural settings, with working with people in urban environments, and then, as I said, the international working with really groups of people in very difficult, political, oppressed economic situations to try and help them discover ways to earn a living and to form communities. So there’s a lot that goes in there along with a lot of corporate stuff that kind of brought me to this point.

Very interesting. And when I first saw you, we were at a session for Creative Mornings. And if anyone’s listening and not familiar, creative Mornings, it’s a national organization with local chapters, and in Tucson we meet on the last Friday of each month, different locations, and usually there’s a speaker and a topic, but prior to.

The.

Feature, if you will, there are an opportunity for people to make a little bit of a pitch. And I was just immediately sort of drawn because you sit up there and said, hey, I’m working on a documentary, and I’d like to find people that have had pain or addiction and have overcome that. What got me was you were specifically talking about through art, not just you’ve gotten through this tough part of your life where you’re dealing with these challenges, that art was sort of your outlet. That was very interesting to me.

It is because the idea that even when we’re in pain, we’ve got the capacity to create, to bring together, to do something perhaps very tangible in whether that art form is drawing or painting. It could be creating food, it could be building something. A friend of mine is an artist who is a sketch artist that focuses on sketching people on the street and in challenging situations. And they even brighten it. Even if they’re not the artist, when they see something creative that was created around them, about them, they are so uplifted by that kind of tell us.

What you’re looking specifically for, how can we help get the word out as far as helping you find the right people for your project?

I think that we’ve got people that we are in process with, with short segments on these documentaries that have found that outlet for themselves. We also have people who are companions to friends with people who are struggling, that are working to find an outlet. So it’s the people that may be in a broken relationship, that may have suffered a significant loss that addiction has been part of, unfortunately part of their life journey that are trying to reach out and do something, whether it’s working creatively on fixing up old cars or restoring furniture. So it’s the people who are doing it, but it’s the people who know somebody who is trying to find that outlet that might want to bring them forward and really elevate and kind of reward, if you will, their efforts. Because this is a day to day thing, Tom. The people were talking about and talking too. So it’s not like they finish one refinish, one great grandma’s rocking chair and they’re done. There are probably people that every day need

a little bit of something to help them down the road and to really stay in the game. And sometimes that even is granular as not taking their own life. They just need something to keep going.

The audience or the demographic that you’re looking for is interesting because just a couple of weeks ago I was listening to a show here on downtown Radio that follows mine a little bit later on Sundays. It’s at noon. It’s called Heavy Mental with Ty Logan and he deals a lot with some of the same topics that you’re discussing. And his particular topic was really his personal story about being exhausted as a compassionate caregiver. That sometimes we forget that people going through the addictions are not the only individuals that are expending so much emotion and energy. And he talked through that piece of with them and helping them through that. And sometimes that individual needs an outlet as well.

One of the films. Coming up in the series is on a man who is a trauma neurologist who has seen in his career, Tom, over 50,000 patients. And he was the person that had to tell the parents of the young woman injured in an accident that their daughter wasn’t ever going to walk again. And so he struggled with PTSD. He also had some chronic some chronic problems where steroids and prescription drugs were a real temptation for him. And he is the wounded serving the wounded, and he has had to find a creative violin for him. It’s in the wilderness, but specifically photography of nature, not photography of people, but photography of places that he feels very grounded and very safe because a lot of his brokenness has come from just confronting the rawness of human emotion. And so he needs a break from that, but also wanted to he also wanted to communicate something serene to other people struggling. So, yes, it’s not only the person that’s experiencing the loss and pains, it’s those around them

as well.

It’s a documentary series called What Made the Difference? That’s the title of the series, and I’m understanding that it’s one segment of each series, is an individual and what made the difference for them.

That’s correct. And I started out the prototype was actually myself. My first wife died of ovarian cancer, which your listeners probably know that that’s a very difficult disease. By the time it’s detected, it’s usually too late. And she was in just such incredible pain and our family obviously loving her was so painful. And I discovered that if I was a percussionist, I would take a conga drum up on the hill near our home and I would just wail on it. I would just wail on the conga and cry and pray and just try and let out all my pain so that I could go back and be a husband and a father and try and earn a living. So that’s what first triggered for me, oh, wait a minute, I did this, but I’m not a unique person. What are other people doing to try and deal with trauma in their life? So that was kind of the start of the whole thing. It was my personal journey.

Do you have any of the series already published and available for people to watch outside of your own story?

We’re about to launch the second one, which is what the doctor ordered, What Made the Difference, and the story of this trauma neurologist in Utah. And that’s going to be launching her in the next couple of weeks around the holidays.

Where would we see that? What’s? The YouTube. Or is it on social media somewhere.

They can reach out to me. Either an email to get the links at peter, at wovenproductions [email protected] or there’s a website, What Made the Difference? That’s going to be going up here shortly.

Do you have a sense of how many do you plan to do in this series or is it just going to be you’re going to keep recording until you feel like you’ve covered the subject well enough?

It’s one of those where I wouldn’t be surprised if ten years from now the interest, the involvement is rolling. I mean, part of who I am is wanting to reach out to as many people and hear as many stories as possible. I’ve even envisioned Tom taking it on the road in the RV and literally setting up camp around the country in cities and just letting it be known that I want to talk with people and hear their stories and really just make that a great time of sharing, of grace, of forgiveness, where we can be together to do that. Some of those likely making in a film, but that’s the bigger vision I have for this is it really is people finding each other and me finding them at the same time.

We’re back to the second half of our interview with Peter Rees in just a moment, but I do want to remind you that you’re listening to Life Along the Streetcar on Downtown Radio 99.1 FM and available for streaming on Downtownradio.org.

Greetings and salutations, downtown radio listeners. Haley O’Dave, your unfrozen caveman DJ, here to spread the good word about the Scrambled Sunrise rock mix happening every weekday morning from seven to 09:00 A.m. Right here on Downtown radio from the earliest days of Psych punk and new wave to 80s college rock, 90s alternative and the ongoing wave of 21st century indie rock. It’s all right here on the Scrambled Sunrise, so tune in via 99.1 FM if you’re in the greater downtown area or streaming worldwide via Downtownradio.org.

I do hope you listen to Paleo Dave every weekday as I do from seven to 09:00. A.m. Good mix of music to start your day. We’re gonna get back to the interview we are in the midst of with Peter Reese. Before the break, we talked about some of his series. What made the difference? He had mentioned a doctor that he is featuring and going to find out in the next segment how he came to meet this doctor and why he featured him on the documentary and get some more details about the series. What made the difference?

Dr. Dave is somebody that I had reconnected with after many years, knowing him as children back in the Midwest and I seen the work he was doing, I heard more about it. I started hearing about his adventures, but also I started hearing about through his extended family, his real struggles, tom that he had in his life and just the chronic pain. There were many days where he had to see his patients. He was laying down on the floor or on a gurney next to his patients because of some of his chronic pain and some of the other medical problems he had. So I started hearing about that. I thought my gosh, I need to reach out to him to at least be sympathetic to his situation. And from that I learned more about his photography and what he was doing. And that’s really the impetus of it. There’s a surprise ending to this documentary that I don’t want to give away, but I think what you’re going to see, the viewers will see, is that we can make a difference in each other’s lives even when we don’t plan

on it, and we can make a difference in our own lives even in spite of ourselves. So I think those are two of the messages that will come through and what the doctor ordered.

When I hear projects like this, I’m always drawn to, first of all, the passion that you must have individually to make this work. But then how are people helping you with the resources and finances? What do you need, and how can people support?

Well, on some of these film projects, I’m discovering that as I tell the story of the story, to be people know somebody, they say, well, you ought to talk to this other person, or people will point me toward resource people, like mental health professionals that can help me understand what this person might be experiencing. So expanding that broader network of people is really important. But in some of my recent filmmaking projects, I’ve had companies, for example, GoPro. A lot of people know the GoPro action cameras, which are tremendous for skateboarding and snowboarding and mountain biking and all that. But from my other professional backgrounds, I know the folks there and they saw some of the projects I was doing, and one in particular, and they got me the technology that I needed to shoot that documentary. And after I was done, they said, keep doing this. Hang onto the cameras, hang on to the equipment, keep on doing it. So even just those kind of resources, Tom, kind of come to the

fore. It’s hard to have too big a network when you’re dealing with helping people and their struggles. So I would encourage those who know people to get a hold of me. Those who might know of places like retreat centers that would be good places to film or bring people. I’d also like to be able to award the participants in this documentary series with some respite, some love for participating. They’re not doing it to get paid. But there’s one company I’m talking to that makes these really wonderful kind of comforter quilty blankets. I said, Well, I’d love to have a bunch of those blankets because I’d love to give a blanket to everybody that I talk to just as a way of bringing comfort to them. So if your listeners have ideas like that, they love to quilt and would love to give some quilts to people that could benefit from a kind of a warm hug, get a hold of me. I would really encourage listeners to just be open, have their eyes open to the people around them that are really kind of inspiring

stories, even if the people aren’t out to be inspiring. And those are the people that I really want to talk to. Not the people that are necessarily giving keynote speech speeches at community luncheons for all they did, but they’re people that are just quietly getting out the watercolors and painting the scenes or sketching people on the street or throwing pots that it’s something constructive to do. They’re not doing it to get noticed. And this is about showing people examples of what they can do rather than necessarily making anybody a national hero. So we’re trying to keep this very humble and so that people, you know, that are more humble, I can work with them in a way that they won’t feel like they’re put on a stage. We just want to tell a beautiful story and make them feel really good about continuing to do what they’re doing well.

Peter Reese. The documentary series is called What Made the Difference? And it’s a series to help people stay in the game another day, to be able to find a healthy, productive place in the world.

The world starts here. You don’t have to go somewhere way far away to see there are people around you that have incredible beauty to them, that have struggles, that have stories to tell. So don’t run past what’s right around you on the streets of Tucson in a rush to save the world. Start getting to know your friends and neighbors, fellow students, and the people down the street, the people you meet on the bus and walking down the road, those are people that need you too.

That is Peter Reese talking about his series. Documentary series. What made the difference? We’ll link to some of his contact information from our Facebook page. Did you want to get a hold of him or refer someone over? That might be a good subject for one of his documentary series segments. My name is Tom Heath. You are listening to Life Along the Streetcar in downtown Radio 99.1 FM and available for streaming on Downtown radio.

You’re listening to Ktdt, Tucson, Arizona, 99.1 FM, downtown radio. I’m Brother Mark, host of a show called Radio Club Crawl that airs every Tuesday at 03:00 P.m.. We try to focus on most of the bands that are coming through Tucson, and we give you a tasty taste of their music. You want to check out what’s happening around Tucson? Check out Radio Club crawl. Tuesdays, 03:00 P.m. Right here on Ktdt. Tucson, Arizona, 99. One FM downtown radio.

Thank you very much.

Enjoy your evening.

Bye bye. We are in December. That means we’ve gotten through the Thanksgiving weekend and Giving Tuesday. I want to thank you for support that you provided to our all volunteer radio station through Giving Tuesday, and remind you that it is never too late to jump on that giving bandwagon. You can head over to our website downtownradio.org for more information on a single donation. Or better yet, maybe a recurring donation, because those monthly recurring donations are a great way to help us budget for things like rent, utilities, equipment. Don’t have to worry about payroll because everyone is a volunteer. If you’d like to know more about the station, you can head over to the website downtownradio.org. And while you’re there, given today’s topic, you might want to check out some of the mental health resources that we link to and maybe some of the shows like Heavy Mental with High Logan, which will be coming up here at the top of the hour and will be on every Sunday with just a really fabulous

candid show. He’s honest about his life, his challenges, and does a great job of making everything relatable. Between now and the top of the hour, we’ll have Ted Prazelski’s, words and work. He talks with writers and members of the labor movement here in Tucson, always has an interesting take on what’s happening in the world. And his guests are very eclectic as well. And for us on Life Along the Streetcar, next week, we got a fun show. We ran into a couple of individuals from the Remote Tucson program. I don’t know if you remember us talking about that from about a year ago. Individuals were offered an opportunity to come to Tucson with all kinds of perks and benefits and work potentially remotely and experience Tucson. We’re coming up on a year of that program. And I met with Monica and her sister Haley, who are part of that cohort and wanted to get their sense of how Tucson has been for them. They’ve got a different background than a lot of people that live in Tucson, so I wanted to pick

their brain a little bit. That was a fun interview. We’ll air that next Sunday right here on Downtown radio. And if there’s a topic you want us to COVID something we should be sharing, hidden gem that others should know about, email us, [email protected] You can hit us up on our Facebook and Instagram. You can also tag us. That’s a great way to connect us all together and make sure we’re covering what we need to COVID

I guess. Today Peter Reese talking about people needing people and always being on the lookout for those that could use a little pick me up. So we thought we’d leave you with music today.

That’s pretty appropriate.

It’s from a duo from a 2021 album. They are Nikola Conte and Gianluca Petra. Hope I am saying those names correctly. And their song is quite simply, people need people. I appreciate you spending some time with us again here this Sunday. My name is Tom Heath. I hope you have a fantastic week and tune in next Sunday for more Life Along the Streetcar.

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