Jeremiah Green, Modest Mouse drummer, dies of cancer at 45

A man with short hair playing drums on a stage illuminated with green light
Jeremiah Green of Modest Mouse performs a 2015 show at Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre in Atlanta. (Katie Darby / Invision/AP)

Modest Mouse drummer Jeremiah Green has died less than a week after his mother announced he had been diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer. He was 45.

The rock band confirmed the death of its percussionist Saturday in a loving statement shared on social media.

Green's mother, Carol Namatame, said on Facebook that the musician "lost his courageous battle with cancer on December 31."

"I don’t know a way to ease into this," read the Modest Mouse statement. "Today we lost our dear friend Jeremiah. He laid down to rest and simply faded out. I’d like to say a bunch of pretty words right now, but it just isn’t the time. These will come later, and from many people. Please appreciate all the love you give, get, have given, and will get. Above all, Jeremiah was about love. We love you."

On Facebook, Namatame wrote, "Jeremiah, drummer and founding member of the Issaquah based band Modest Mouse ... went peacefully in his sleep."

"Jeremiah was a light to so many," she continued in her statement. "At this time the family is requesting privacy. More information will be forthcoming including a Celebration of Life for friends and fans in the coming months. Jeremiah’s loved ones would like to thank everyone for their continued well wishes and support."

Namatame revealed her son's illness on Dec. 25, and Modest Mouse frontman Isaac Brock later clarified that his band mate been diagnosed with cancer "a short while ago."

Green was undergoing treatment as recently as Tuesday. Popular rock radio DJ Marco Collins previously shared that Green had pulled out of Modest Mouse's concert tour to receive chemotherapy, adding that his oncologist was "a big fan" of the band.

In 1992, Green founded Modest Mouse alongside Brock and bassist Eric Judy in the Seattle suburb of Issaquah, Wash. The group greatly influenced the independent rock genre while navigating the music industry in the Pacific Northwest and eventually built a more widespread following among alternative rock fans in the early 2000s after signing to Sony Music Entertainment's Epic Records.

On Dec. 20, Modest Mouse wrapped its concert tour of the United States and Canada celebrating the 25th anniversary of its breakthrough album, “The Lonesome Crowded West." The nearly sold-out tour included a Dec. 1 show with Green at the Wiltern in Los Angeles.

Green was barely in his teens when he joined the newly formed Modest Mouse, which later relocated from Seattle to Portland. Its name originates from a passage by Virginia Woolf, who once described everyday individuals as “modest mouse-coloured people.”

Influenced by Talking Heads and XTC among others, Modest Mouse debuted in 1996 with the album “This Is a Long Drive for Someone With Nothing to Think About” and built a substantial critical following before having mainstream success with their fourth release, “Good News for People Who Love Bad News,” and the singles “Float On” and “Ocean Breathes Salty.”

Green had a breakdown around the time of “Good News for People Who Love Bad News,” released in 2004, and briefly left the band. He was back for more recent albums, including “Strangers to Ourselves” and “The Golden Casket,” which came out in 2021.

Times staff writer Jonah Valdez and the Associated Press contributed to this report.

This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.