Most people can hear a certain song and it will take them back to a prior experience, maybe to a feeling had and relived through a melody. Idyltime is comprised of four souls eternally searching for the source of this nostalgia. People often tell us that our music takes them back to a memory, and it reminds them of the good in the world.
Idyltime, a band originally playing bluegrass out of southern Oregon, re-formed in 2011 when Beth and Tate Mason moved to Boise, Idaho. There they joined up with Dave Daley and Ava Honey who were hosting the weekly old-time jam at Pengilly’s. Dave and Ava continue to be extremely active in developing the acoustic roots music and square dance scene in Boise. With over 40 years of fiddling, Dave brings a lifetime of musical experience to the original songwriting of Idyltime. We are all about enriching lives through music and community.
A fiddle, banjo, mandolin, dobro, guitar, and an upright bass. Four voices, eight hands, forty fingers. Let’s pick.
Hailing from Powers, Oregon, Beth “Betsy” Mason hit her first harmony note as a five year old singing in a church pew. Shortly after she was trained on the piano she was playing and singing many of the old gospel hymns by heart. While attending Warner Pacific College she was a member of the Concert Choir, Chorale, and became a vocalist for the virtuosic harmony group Saving Grace. After touring much of the West, singing in churches and school halls, Beth sat herself down in her adopted Portland and learned to play the guitar. It was about this time, around the turn of the century, that Beth first heard and embraced old-time fiddle music. The soulful harmonies and down-to-earth melodies sang to her heart and she has been sharing her passion ever since. Beth now primarily plays upright bass, both with Idyltime and the soulful folk powerhouse, Stoneseed. Beth currently lives in Boise, ID with her husband Tate, their daughter Maybelle, and their dog Nellie Kane.
As the second runner up in her homecoming debate team, Ava has always had high hopes and dreams. Playing music came along like a hobo hopping off a freight train. Singing sometimes sounds better in the shower and calling square dances seems to be a calling.
Dave Daley first began playing square dance music on guitar, mandolin, and fiddle in 1971 in Menlo Park, California. It was there he met Bertram Levy (original member of Hollow Rock String Band), and was introduced to tunes and fiddling styles of southern Appalachia. Over the next two years Dave’s association with Levy, Paul Hostetter and Irene Herrmann (from Bonny Doon, Ca.) developed into a lifelong passion for acoustic folk music, old time string band music, and dance music of other cultures. After moving to Idaho in 1974, Dave became one of the founding members of the Mores Creek String Band — a hard-driving acoustic dance band that, for 20 years played square, contra, swing, and Irish dances. Currently Dave plays with many great Boise musicians including the Irish flavored, Giant Leprechauns.
Tate Mason has had a love for music since childhood. Born and raised in the Pacific Northwest, Tate was exposed to various musical genres from a young age. While attending Western Washington University Tate was inspired to pick up the guitar. He began learning Dead tunes and blues standards until Garcia and Grisman’s acoustic musings revealed the subtle brilliance of old-time music. It was then that Tate explored his love for traditional music and the 5-string banjo. He bought his first banjo at Frank’s pawn shop in Bellingham, WA and quickly learned the three finger roll. He then strapped his banjo to his back and spent 10 years rambling the world, counting birds and picking his banjo. Tate has been living in Boise, ID since 2011 where he has earned his Master’s degree in Raptor Biology from Boise State University. Learn about his research here.