Rolling Stones drummer Charlie Watts likely sitting out next tour – The A.V. Club

From left: Charlie Watts, Mick Jagger, and Keith Richards

From left: Charlie Watts, Mick Jagger, and Keith Richards
Photo: Stephen Lovekin (Getty Images)

As a band, The Rolling Stones turn 60 years old next year—that’s five years away from the retirement age here in the U.S. Don’t tell its members that, though. Mick’s still doing his little chicken dance like he’s not a 78-year-old with a 4-year-old son named Deveraux Octavian Basil Jagger. But, what can you say? They still got it.

However, while they’re gearing up for their “No Filter” tour, which was delayed due to the pandemic, one of the Stones will likely be staying home this go around. Charlie Watts, Stones drummer since 1963 and an 80-year-old man, will probably spend the next year at home rather than behind the drums, per a statement from the band. The news comes not as the result of some supposedly vaccine-related band drama, like that of the Offspring, but rather following a medical procedure from which Watts is still recovering.

“Charlie has had a procedure which was completely successful, but I gather his doctors this week concluded that he now needs proper rest and recuperation,” said the spokesman for the band. “With rehearsals starting in a couple of weeks it’s very disappointing to say the least, but it’s also fair to say no one saw this coming.”

Watts similarly expressed disappointment with having to sit this one out. He said:

For once my timing has been a little off. I am working hard to get fully fit but I have today accepted on the advice of the experts that this will take a while. After all the fans’ suffering caused by COVID, I really do not want the many RS fans who have been holding tickets for this Tour to be disappointed by another postponement or cancellation. I have therefore asked my great friend Steve Jordan to stand in for me.

Emmy and Grammy winner Steve Jordan, known for his work with the bands on Saturday Night Live and Late Night With David Letterman, will fill in for Watts. Like the rest of us, Jordan hopes that his time at the kit will be short-lived. “It is an absolute honor and a privilege to be Charlie’s understudy and I am looking forward to rehearsing with Mick, Keith and Ronnie,” he said. “No one will be happier than me to give up my seat on the drum riser as soon as Charlie tells me he is good to go.”