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Meet the von Grey sisters Saturday in Thunderbolt

A remarkably strong lineup has been announced for the fifth annual Yuletide Jam, a 14–hour festival of music Dec. 8 at Tubby’s in Thunderbolt.

Along with Wormsloew, the Eric Culberson Band, Junkyard Angel, Turtle Folk and others, there’s this: Alpharetta’s von Grey, an acoustic, harmony–heavy quartet that blends intoxicating Americana with classical instrumentation.

Kathryn, Annika, Fiona and Petra von Grey — they’re sisters — bring to mind the wistful musical beauty of Mumford & Sons, Fleet Foxes and the Civil Wars. The Atlanta Journal–Constitution called the group “nothing short of stunning.” Von Grey shared the Fox Theatre Stage with Ireland’s musical lords, the Chieftains, and they’ve played to great acclaim in Ireland and India.

“Watch out for them,” raved MetroFlash. “They’re going to be huge.” Click on this link to see and hear the group in action:

Gates open at 11:30 a.m. for the benefit for Second Harvest, which starts at noon and goes through 2 a.m. Advance tickets are $20 at They’re $25 at the door.

This Habitat Noisy

In Donald Moats, Savannah may have its own Dave Grohl.

The singer/songwriter and guitarist in the grunge trio Habitat Noise is, organically speaking, a drummer. The Georgia native spent four years hitting the skins in Los Angeles before coming home, in 2008, to open a recording studio, which he called Habitat Noise.

He also taught himself guitar.

“When I was out west,” says Moats, “I went through a lot of bands that we would have a singer, then six months later, the singer’s not showing up any more. He’s just gone. We don’t know why.

“I just got tired of that, and I wanted to have at least one stable act. And it’s a lot easier doing that, because I can just control that aspect of it, I guess.”

Although he plays most of the instruments on Frequencies on Earth, the just–released second Habitat Noise album (available through iTunes and other digital retailers), onstage Moats plays with drummer Chris Nelson and bassist Lisa Lombardi.

“I’m just learning, man, that’s about all I can say,” Moats laughs. “I’m a drummer, and I’m trying to learn how to do the rest. I think the songwriting is strong, I’m trying to get the vocal lead and kinda round it all out right now. But it’s grunge rock ‘n’ roll, not much to it ... just play what you feel kind of deal, you know?”

Both Nelson and Lombardi are full–time teachers, which limits Habitat Noise’s opportunities to perform live. They will, however, be at Screamin’ Mimi’s Dec. 7, with The Joy Kills and Conquer America.

Ah, but Moats is fighting his foo in other ways. A few months ago, he took over the drum chair in Whaleboat. How come?

“Mainly because I just love playing music, and I wanted something that was going to occupy my time,” he says. “And I’d been looking to play drums in a band since I moved to Savannah. I just never really found the right group of people that I could kind of get along with, and all that. I wanted to find something that was consistent — now this is going well, so it’s pretty fun.”

News & stuff

Dan Deacon, one of the country’s most innovative indie composer/artists, performs Dec. 10 at Dollhouse Productions, 980 Industry Drive. It’s his third local appearance; Triathalon and Grand Buffet open this one. Deacon combines acoustic instrumentation, electronics and live drumming to form a fascinating sonic soundscape; he and his fellow musicians don’t play on a stage, but at floor level, inviting a sort of hypnotic audience participation. Go to his site ( to view his personal and professional manifesto, and to get a free download of a special Smartphone app that will synch you up with Dan and the band during the performance (trust me, it’s cool). Show starts at 8 p.m.; tickets are available at Graveface Records, and at

• Fiddler and Savannah native Moira Nelligan returns for her annual Celtic Christmas show. The cieli — that’s an old–time Irish dance — is at 8 p.m. parish hall of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church. Nelligan and her band, the Dixie Jigs, will perform with Jacquie Berger and the Atlanta Irish Dance Troupe, with special guest Gabriel Lawrence and step–dancing by champion dancers in traditional costumes. See–celtic–christmas.

• The Savannah Children’s Choir’s annual holiday concert is presented like an old–time radio show — and we’re the studio audience — Sunday, Dec. 9 at Asbury Memorial United Methodist Church. Showtime for the “Holiday Radio Hour” is 4 p.m. See

• The 2nd Homegrown Holiday Hoedown happens Friday, Dec. 14 at American Legion 135 on Bull Street. More on this next week.