David and Tamara Hauze have performed together for 20 years, celebrating the joy of music and life.
They book performances all 12 months of the year, playing for weddings, annual meetings, festivals, fundraisers and musical events. They're generally busy Thursdays through Sundays.
They performed at Pioneer Days in Crawford Saturday, June 10. They also do the sound engineering for this annual event.
Two days before, June 8, they played a benefit concert for Delta County Search and Rescue at Cedaredge Town Park.
On Aug. 24 they will perform at the Chapel of the Cross as part of the chapel's summer concert series.
"Years ago it was quieter in the winter," David said, "but now we are busy 12 months out of the year. June is always incredibly busy." David and Tamara perform an eclectic variety of contemporary favorites, from folk, rock, country to alternative genres. They also play original selections.
"Our acoustic sound is expressed thoughtfully through refined vocal harmonies and guitar, carrying positive messages to warm the heart and uplift the soul," David says.
To transcend the commonplace and powerfully convey beauty and harmony, they select his Celtic harp and Tamara's flute to perform Celtic, Renaissance, classical and original music selections. "With these selections, we celebrate with our audiences the joy of music and life," David says.
David recalls with gratitude that his introduction to becoming a performing musician came from playing Renaissance and Celtic music with Byron and Ginny Allen, who lived on Rogers Mesa at that time. He played all the Renaissance-era woodwinds.
After the Allens moved to Maui, he bought a small harp while visiting friends in New York. He learned to play it after he put his children to bed at night.
"Two hours later, playing the harp had filled me up, heart, mind and spirit," he said. Eight months later he graduated to a large harp. His first solo outing was playing background harp at Redstone Inn.
These two performance-active musicians also manage to work professional jobs into their busy schedules.
Tamara has been a hospice nurse with HopeWest for over six years, serving Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays. A nurse for 35 years, she has a lot of experience in public health and clinical work. She says, "Hope West is an amazing organization. I have never been happier in my career."
When Tamara graduated with her nursing degree, Ida Walden, then director of nursing for Delta County Memorial Hospital, contacted her, offering Tamara her first job. Walden had known Tamara's mother, who was also a nurse.
Tamara is a fifth generation native of Delta County. Her great-great-grandfather, Isaac Wiley, is buried in the Crawford cemetery.
David teaches private music lessons on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays, averaging 30 students at any time. Lessons take place in private homes, Vision Charter Academy and with home school groups. His students include all ages -- adults, school-aged children and young children not yet in school.
David plays and teaches guitar, harp, mandolin, banjo, flute, violin, cello, zither and recorder.
"In the mornings I load up my car with the instruments I will be teaching that day," he said.
"Teaching is precious for me. I have been in the home of one family once a week for 20 years. I seldom lose a student. A few students have become professional musicians. They call me for guidance in purchasing sound systems, components and instruments."
He also teaches group lessons, including beginning guitar to a group of older women called Young at Heart. David arranges events where the groups can play and he can play with them.
David is also music director at Center for Spiritual Living in Delta.
David grew up in New Jersey, left there after college, and moved to Ophir to be a ski instructor at Telluride. He ski raced in college. His degree is in environmental science, but every semester he took a music class as an elective.
David and Tamara met at Center for Spiritual Living in Montrose. David was the music director and Tamara a congregant. David needed a small choir to participate in the ordination ceremony of their minister, Kay Spinden. Tamara was persuaded to be part of that choir. It was their first musical encounter.
Tamara's musical experience began when she was five years old and she sang a solo on stage in the Christmas program. She sang in the Delta High School Choir under Jerry Longman's direction and played flute in the Delta Junior High Band under the direction of Richard Weldon.
There was a lot of matchmaking for Tamara and David among the congregation at the center. There was a lot of sitting on the couch at her house and singing together during their courtship.
"I was already a music professional and Tamara was on that path. I had every confidence she was ready and only needed to get started," David said.
Tamara added, "Music performance was not on my radar screen but our years of performing together is testimony to the fact that you can do whatever you set your mind to do.
"I did have to be careful what I wore. I chose something heavy so people couldn't see my knees shaking."
David said, "This has been a very rich time, and I recognize how special it is that we are experiencing this adventure and this journey together."
Tamara added, "I get a lot of reinforcement from people who say, 'It's so good that you two get to do this together'."
When Tamara and David met, Tamara's son Ben was a percussionist, David's son Sean was a bass player, and David's daughter Sarah was a vocalist. Together, they became the group Higher Ground.
Tamara remembered, "We had a lot of fun as a family playing festivals with the kids for several years. But as they got older, the kids got better offers."
"They are in their 30s now and individually living their own lives," David said. "None of them are performing music but all are very capable musicians."
David and Tamara participated three years in a row in Jamaica Outreach at the request of Pam Bliss, taking programs to orphanages and public schools in Jamaica.
"Music is a very important part of the lives of these Jamaican children," said David, who took binders filled with copies of songs the Jamaican children would know. He brought three keyboards, five new guitars and 50 recorders for the children to use in learning to read and play music.
Nutrition is a basic concern for the Jamaican children. Using her training as a nurse, Tamara prepared a nutrition curriculum for all the schools, kindergarten through high school. The curriculum included songs about nutrition. Eventually, the Rotary Club of the North Fork started a breakfast program for the Jamaican schoolchildren.
Delta's second annual "Kickoff to Christmas" takes place Saturday, Nov. 25. This event is sponsored by the Delta Area Chamber of Commerce and First Colorado National Bank.