But the defining tragedy of the band was the loss of their 23-year-old drummer John Ryan Pike in June 2007. His death occurred before Ra Ra Riot reached a substaintial national fanbase, so many fans and critics have been enamored with the ironic lyrics of "Dying Is Fine" and "Ghosts Under Rocks" (Pike co-wrote both songs).
On May 19, 2008, the band and Barsuk announced its association, and their first album was released in August. Ra Ra Riot has been to the South by Southwest Music Conference every year since 2007. So far, the band's biggest break in terms of exposure came when their single "Can You Tell?" was included on the soundtrack for the Miley Cyrus movie The Last Kiss.
Ra Ra Riot is currently touring in support of their sophomore album The Orchard (release date: August 24, 2010), including a stop at The Clubhouse in Tempe, Arizona on October 22, 2010.
- Wesley Miles (vocals)
- Milo Bonacci (guitar)
- Alexandra Lawn (cello)
- Rebecca Zeller (violin)
- Mathieu Santos (bass)
- John Pike (drums, deceased)
- Gabriel Duquette (drums)
The band received somewhat mixed reviews on PsychoAndy.com Message Boards since Kay likes them, Vic liked them enough to download the album, but he deleted after getting bored with it, and most of the other board members are not aware of them.