If you asked people about Minnesota when I was growing up in the 70s, most would have described it as a place of sub-zero temps and knee-deep snow. I can’t imagine anyone responding with: “Minnesota? Oh, that’s that hotbed of independent rock.” But during the 80s and early 90s, this is exactly what Minnesota became. The state known for snow was suddenly knee-deep in great – and greatly influential – bands. Husker Du, the Replacements, Soul Asylum – even Prince and his funk-rock legion hailed from the state.
While most everyone knows about the aforementioned bands, much fewer are aware of another great Minnesota group: the Gear Daddies. The Daddies’ lifespan was short and their output small – just three albums between 1988 and 1992 – but they produced some really good, really heartfelt, country-infused rock (which now stands as one of the earlier and more rocking examples of what would come to be known as alt-country). The 1990 disc Billy’s Live Bait is certainly the band’s high point. Here are three tunes from it (well, four actually, as “One Voice” features a goofy, don’t-miss bonus ditty at the end).
[MP3] Gear Daddies – Don’t Look at Me
[MP3] Gear Daddies – Time Heals
[MP3] Gear Daddies – One Voice
Buy Billy’s Live Bait