Charlie Watts, the legendary Rolling Stones drummer, has passed at age 80.
While not the original drummer, Watts joined the fledgling Stones in 1963 and played on every album they ever recorded. He was as steady as the morning star, and the Stones often said if Charlie wasn’t there, then the Stones weren’t either. However in recent weeks doctors advised Watts that he should not tour with the band and they enlisted Steve Jordan as a fill-in. Watts never recovered and passed away in hospital.
The Stones have sold 200,000,000 albums over the last 57 years. Watts’ steady beat was behind them all.
His style was simple yet essential. Charlie was one of the steadiest drummers in rock history. Perhaps his greatest performance was on “Gimme Shelter”, his unmistakable rhythm propelling the song.
Of all the rock star deaths in 2021, this could be the most devastating. Rest in peace, Charlie Watts. You helped make rock and roll what it became.