Gear Daddies

Gear Daddies is an Americana/Rock band originally from Austin, Minnesota. Members Martin Zellar (electric and acoustic guitar, harmonica and vocals), Nick Ciola (bass), Randy Broughten (electric and pedal steel guitar) and James “Billy” Dankert (drums and vocals), played their first shows together in 1984. Between 1986 and 1992, the band released three popular albums and became an important part of the Twin Cities music scene. Many of the fans' favorite songs (“Stupid Boy”, “Color of Her Eyes”, “She’s Happy”, “Drank So Much” and many others) are credited to the exceptionally passionate writing skills possessed by Zellar, however Dankert has also contributed some of the compositions , including "Time Heals", and “Blues Mary”.

Their most notable mainstream success was when they played "Stupid Boy" on Late Night with David Letterman in 1991. Zellar had this to say of the experience: "I was so nervous, and it all happened so quickly. I couldn't tell you what the hell happened. I got done, and I was walking back and said to Randy (Broughten), 'Did I sing all the words? Did I do that?' When I watched it that night in the hotel room I had no recollection of having lived it."

Arguably, Zellar’s “I Wanna Drive the Zamboni" is the band’s best-known song, having been featured in the movies D2: The Mighty Ducks and Mystery, Alaska, as well as on the television program Malcolm in the Middle. It's also a staple at hockey games throughout North America and Europe. Gear Daddies have been mentioned as an influence on a number of bands that emerged in the Upper Midwest in the late 1980s through the 1990s, including: The Billy's, Violet, Shoot Lucy, Dazy Head Mazy, Groundhouse and Six Mile Grove.

Upcoming Shows


May
4
th
First Avenue
May
4
th
First Avenue

Gear Daddies

★ Local Show ★
with Chad Johnson and The Minnesota Transplants

Past Shows


Sep
17
th
2022
7th St Entry
Sep
17
th
2022
7th St Entry

Gear Daddies

‘BILLY’S LIVE BAIT’ Vinyl Re-Release
with John Magnuson Trio
Sep
16
th
2022
7th St Entry
Sep
16
th
2022
7th St Entry

Gear Daddies

‘BILLY’S LIVE BAIT’ Vinyl Re-Release
with The Scarlet Goodbye
Nov
26
th
2021
First Avenue
Nov
26
th
2021
First Avenue

Gear Daddies

with Miles Nielsen
May
4
th
2019
Mainroom
May
4
th
2019
Mainroom

Gear Daddies

with High on Stress
May
5
th
2018
Mainroom
May
5
th
2018
Mainroom

Gear Daddies

with Miles Nielsen & The Rusted Hearts
May
6
th
2017
Mainroom
May
6
th
2017
Mainroom

Gear Daddies

with SAM LLANAS (formerly of BoDeans)
May
13
th
2016
Mainroom
May
13
th
2016
Mainroom

Gear Daddies

with Tom Fuller Band
May
6
th
2016
Mainroom
May
6
th
2016
Mainroom

Gear Daddies

with The Whiskies
May
10
th
2015
Mainroom
May
10
th
2015
Mainroom

Gear Daddies

with White Iron Band
May
9
th
2015
Mainroom
May
9
th
2015
Mainroom

Gear Daddies

with the Billy's
May
8
th
2015
Mainroom
May
8
th
2015
Mainroom

Gear Daddies

with Six Mile Grove

More Shows

Jun
28
th
Fine Line

The Living Tombstone

with Qbomb
Sep
8
th
Fine Line

Kimberly Perry (of The Band Perry)

with Madeline Merlo
Jun
30
th
Turf Club

Molly Brandt, Katy Tessman and the Turnbuckles, Emily Haavik, and The International Treasures

Jul
23
rd
Fine Line

The Greeting Committee

with TOLEDO