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Pink Martini's Derek Rieth Dies

OPB | Aug. 22, 2014 1:56 p.m. | Updated: Aug. 22, 2014 7:21 p.m. | Portland

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Pink Martini percussionist Derek Rieth has died. The band announced his death to its fans via Facebook Friday afternoon.

The musician was a 20-year member of the Portland-based “little orchestra” band, which started in 1994. Rieth played drums, bongos, congas, cymbals and the triangle for the group.

The Portland Police Bureau reports that Rieth died by suicide. He was found during a welfare check Wednesday.

Pink Martini still plans to play at the Oregon Zoo Friday evening and Saturday with the von Trapps. The band members write on the Facebook page that they’re still planning to play because they believe that’s what Rieth would have wanted. 

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