After steadily growing in popularity the Attic Ramblers’ new single Need Your Love finally topped the Indigenous Music Countdown chart this week. The summer tune has been crawling up the chart ever since its release in late June, staying in the top 10 all through August.
“It was an absolute surprise,” said Lance Delisle, the group’s drummer. “I think all of us share the same feeling. Knowing the work you put into the song, and knowing that people across Turtle Island appreciated the work you did, you only feel humbled by the experience.”
The two-hour top-40 chart program plays on a weekly basis on Sirius XM and seven other radio stations across the country. It’s the second ever single for the band.
It was a song they had in the bank for some years before it was finally mastered and released. The first recording sessions began back in 2017 in the attic of Delisle’s Kahnawake home – also the source of inspiration for the band’s name. Recording later culminated in 2019 at a recording studio in Malibu, California.
The band’s vocalist, guitarist, and producer Derek Miller, from Six Nations, made it all possible. The self-described “head wizard” of the band was the one who wrote the lyrics. He also was the one who brought in back-up vocalist Charly Lowly, who is Lumbee/Tuscarora.
“We were recording a bunch of songs then and we got three down. We only released two, and they both went to number one,” said Miller, also a two-time Juno Award-winning solo artist. The Attic Ramblers’ 2019 release Roll With Me also topped the same chart for two consecutive weeks that December.
“Corey Diabo is probably one of the best guitarists in all of the world. He’s that good, and he’s right in Kahnawake,” said Miller, of Diabo, who rose to fame with the band Jonas (Tomalty, who later went solo).
“Need Your Love just seems to be striking a chord with people and I’m really happy that it’s some medicine. It was some medicine at a time for me.”
Delisle was the one who pitched the Bo Diddley beat, mentioning the 1950s blues artist and the song Hey! Bo Diddley in particular.
“There’s a bit of inspiration that comes from there,” he said. “We tried to give an island feel. We had a lot of influences. The more that was added into the song, the more we realized we had something special here.”
K1037 Radio has also been playing the song on repeat ever since its release.
“It’s a happy-go-lucky type of tune. We’ve known the guys for a long time. I grew up with Corey and Lance, so it’s nice to see a little success for them,” said Hiio Kirby, a DJ with the radio station.
“The community’s proud of these guys. It would be nice to see it move into another chart other than the Indigenous charts, too. That would be something special.”
Dave McLoad, the main producer behind the syndicated program, said he’s not surprised at all to see the song hit number one. Each song’s position in their chart depends on online voting, in addition to those they get from their participating radio stations.
“The Attic Ramblers put out a great summer song – we suspected it would do well,” said McLoad. “We’re very happy for them, and they are popular online too. There’s no question that they have a fanbase that wanted to see them go number one. They certainly touched a lot of people with their music.”
This article was originally published in print on Friday, September 8, in issue 32.36 of The Eastern Door.