Gear Daddies

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Gear Daddies
Genres Rock, country, Americana, alternative country
The Gear Daddies on stage

The Gear Daddies are a rock band originally from Austin, Minnesota. Randy Broughten (electric and steel guitar), Nick Ciola (bass), Billy Dankert (drums and vocals), and Martin Zellar (guitar, harmonica and vocals) played their first shows together in 1984. They released singles and albums between 1986 and 1992 and became an important part of the Twin Cities music scene. Most songs were written by Zellar, though Dankert also had several of note, including crowd favorite "Time Heals".

Their most notable mainstream success was when Zellar and Broughten played "Stupid Boy" on Late Night with David Letterman in 1991. Ciola and Dankert did not play on the show because many bands simply sat in with The World's Most Dangerous Band. Zellar had this to say of the experience: "I was so nervous, and it happened so quick. 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."

"Zamboni" is their best-known song, having been featured in the movies D2: The Mighty Ducks and Mystery, Alaska, as well as on television program Malcolm in the Middle. It is often played during intermissions at hockey games throughout North America.

After the dissolution the band, Zellar began an active career of performing and recording with the band that became known as Martin Zellar and the Hardways, taking with him long-time friend and bassist Nick Ciola.

Electric guitarist Randy Broughten is currently a physical education teacher in Rosemount, Minnesota. As well as being a member of The Cactus Blossoms, he has also been the steel guitar player for many years with Minneapolis country band Trailer Trash, who are known for their annual Christmas shows, and who also had a cameo in the mockumentary film Dill Scallion.

Drummer James "Billy" Dankert is a professional visual artist as well as a musician.

As of the present, all four members of the Gear Daddies reunite several times a year to perform throughout the Midwest.

The Gear Daddies were an influence on a number of bands that emerged in the upper Midwest in the late 1980s through the 1990s, including Johnny Clueless, The Billy's, Violet, Shoot Lucy, Dazy Head Mazy, Groundhouse and Six Mile Grove.[citation needed]

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