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Old Time Barn Dance with Paving Gravy @Notre Dame Academy

Saturday 1/10, 7:30 P.M., $7 general, $6 students and Savannah Folk Music Society members

I WAS square dancing in North Carolina barns from the time I could stand; in my family, memorizing how to do a four-leaf clover or garden gate was a priority on par with spelling your name and learning the Pledge of Allegiance.

When I moved to flat Georgia, I’d sometimes look at that stretch of Atlantic and find myself pining for the mountains and the wild spin of a good ol’ country square dance, the caller’s commands crackling over a just-hanging-in-there PA system.

Imagine my delight when Joe Nelson told me that the Savannah Folk Music Society hosted monthly dances! While the Glow in the Dark String Band typically provides the soundtrack, Paving Gravy will set the tune and tempo at the January 10 dance.

Paving Gravy is a super-group of sorts featuring Colleen Heine and Zach Smith of The Accomplices and Cory Chambers and Jay Rudd of City Hotel. You may have seen them pickin’ and grinnin’ at Tybee Island Social Club during Sunday brunch (their usual gig). While The Accomplices and City Hotel keep their roots in mind while exploring new styles and interpretations of bluegrass and country music, Paving Gravy is all about keeping it old school, with standards and lesser-known tunes to keep your toes tapping.

If your last square dance happened in middle school gym class, there’s no need to fret. One, the art of square dancing is way more fun than your burn-out gym coach made it seem, and two, you’ll have the chance to learn some moves the night of. You don’t even need to bring a partner, just a good attitude – and shouldn’t we all be starting the New Year with some gusto?