We don’t need to state how legendary was the drummer of The Rolling Stones, Charlie Watts. Often mentioned as the engine of the band by Keith Richards, Watts passed away in August of 2021 in the middle of their No Filter Tour. However, the remaining band members did not stop the tour to give tribute to their pal and honor him.
Around a month later, following Watts’ death, The Rolling Stones continued their tour from St. Louis, Missouri, on September 26, with their last show in November. Clearly, Watts was like family to the band and it was not easy for them to continue with the tour, but to honor their buddy, they decided to continue it.
The Rolling Stones considered postponing the tour
As mentioned, it was not easy for the band to move on, let alone continue their tour. Keith Richards even stated in BC’s series, “My Life as a Rolling Stone,” that he is still dealing with Charlie’s passing. And naturally, the band considered postponing the tour, as anyone would have however, they dropped the plan and continued their tour.
So what made them change their mind? well, it was none other than their friend Charlie. While the band obviously wanted to honor and “do him proud,” they also felt that Charlie would have wanted them to continue their tour. While talking to CBS Sunday News, Keith was asked if the band “talked about whether the tour should go on” and he replied, “For a brief moment. I think Charlie wanted us to go on the road, he wanted the tour to happen that’s my feeling the last time I spoke to him.”
Many artists paid tribute to Charlie Watts
Charlie was a well-respected and great music artist so of course there were fans and many artists who paid tribute to the late drummer. First, obviously, his bandmates paid homage to him. Ronnie Wood posted a picture of him with Charlie and wrote that he loves and will dearly miss him.
Similarly, other artists paid tribute to Watts including Sir James Paul McCartney who posted a video on Twitter where he said, “So sad to hear about Charlie Watts, Stones drummer, dying, he was a lovely guy. I knew he was ill, but I didn’t know he was this ill, so lots of love to his family, his wife and kids, and his extended family, and condolences to the Stones. It’ll be a huge blow to them because Charlie was a rock, and a fantastic drummer, steady as a rock.”
Paul on Charlie Watts ❤️ pic.twitter.com/rn2elK6cFE
— Paul McCartney (@PaulMcCartney) August 24, 2021
He further said, “love you, Charlie, I’ve always loved you. Beautiful man, and great condolences and sympathies to his family.”
Steve Jordan replaced the late drummer Charlie Watts
Even before Charlie’s death, Steve Jordan was announced as the temporary replacement for Watts for the No Filter Tour because Charlie had elected to sit out due to a medical emergency. Charlie Watts who was 80 years at the time underwent heart surgery but sadly, the surgery was not successful.
He died on August 24, 2021, at a London hospital. Following Watts’ passing, Steve Jordan who was only a temporary drummer permanently replaced Watts as The Rolling Stones’ drummer. However, Charlie will always be in our hearts.
Keith Richards stated in an interview that it is weird to look back when he was asked if he finds it weird to look back and not see Charlie there. He said, “Yeah that is, that is strange yes. To turn suddenly and you know after all these years you just expect that face.” But he also recognizes Jordan’s talent, that’s why he also said that “Charlie’s replacement Steve Jordan is something else as well.”