‘He’s told me the show must go on’: Ronnie Wood says he’ll ‘miss’ Charlie Watts on Rolling Stones’ US tour after the drummer pulled out following emergency surgery
- Ronnie said he’s been told by Charlie that ‘the show must go on’ after he was forced to pull out of the upcoming tour
- Charlie, 80, will sit out first Rolling Stones since joining the band in 1963
- The drummer, in good spirits, joked: ‘For once, my timing has been a little off’
- The band will however go ahead with 13-date No Filter tour of the US next month
- Guitarist Keith Richards’ friend Steve Jordan said it was ‘an honour’ to stand in for Watts while he recovered from ’emergency procedure’
Ronnie Wood has admitted he’ll ‘miss’ his Rolling Stones bandmate Charlie Watts after he was forced to pull out of the group’s US tour.
The rock legend, 74, insisted he’s been told ‘the show must go on’ after drummer Charlie withdrew from the group’s upcoming performances following an emergency operation.
Speaking to The Mirror, Ronnie said: ‘I will miss Charlie on our upcoming tour, but he told me the show must go on.
It’s a shame: Ronnie Wood, 74, has admitted he’ll ‘miss’ his Rolling Stones bandmate Charlie Watts after he was forced to pull out of the group’s US tour
‘I’m really looking forward to Charlie getting back on stage with us as soon as he’s fully recovered. A huge thank you to the band’s old friend Steve Jordan for rockin’ on in Charlie’s place.’
His bandmate Keith Richards, 77, added: ‘This has been a bit of a blow to all of us, to say the least, and we’re all wishing for Charlie to have a speedy recovery.’
On Thursday it was revealed that Charlie had been forced to withdraw from the band’s tour of the US after having an emergency operation.
On hold: The rock legend insisted he’s been told ‘the show must go on’ after drummer Charlie withdrew from the group’s upcoming performances following an emergency operation
The star underwent a ‘successful procedure’ in London after a routine check-up highlighted a problem, according to reports.
But on the advice of doctors, Watts announced he would sit out the band’s shows for ‘rest and recuperation’ – the first time he has missed a tour since 1963.
Clearly still in good spirits, he joked: ‘For once, my timing has been a little off.’
But faced with several weeks of recovery, there is no prospect of Watts being able to make rehearsals for the Stones’ 13-date No Filter tour of the states, which is due to kick off in September.
A spokesman for the band described the situation as ‘disappointing to say the least’ but admitted ‘it’s also fair to say no one saw this coming’.
Watts, who learnt drum along to old jazz records, will be temporarily replaced by session drummer and long-time friend of the band Steve Jordan.
According to the Sun, the band hope to have him back for their 60th anniversary celebrations in 2022, when they will release their first album of original songs in 17 years.
Pushed: The Rolling Stones’ had already postponed their tour last year because of the Covid pandemic. Pictured from left: Ronnie Wood, Mick Jagger, Keith Richards and Charlie Watts
Watts added: ‘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 disappointment with delays to the tour caused by Covid, I really don’t want the many Stones fans in the States who have been holding tickets to have another postponement or cancellation.
‘I have therefore asked my great friend Steve Jordan to stand in for me.’
Steve Jordan said: ‘It is an absolute honour and a privilege to be Charlie’s understudy and I am looking forward to rehearsing with Mick (Jagger), Keith (Richards) and Ronnie (Wood).
‘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.’
On the mend: Watts says he hopes to be back with the band soon and especially for 60th anniversary celebrations next year
Jordan has been a long-time friend of the Stones, having worked with Keith Richards since 1988 in his X-Pensive Winos side-band. The pair first met while performing in a backing band for Chuck Berry documentary film in 1986.
The band had only announced the relaunch of the tour, derailed by the pandemic, last month, with the first performance coming in St. Louis on September 26.
‘I’m so excited to get back on the stage again and want to thank everyone for their patience,’ frontman Mick Jagger, 78, said in a statement. ‘See you soon!’
Perfect stand in: Steve Jordan, a session drummer and long-time friend of the band, said it was ‘an honour and privilege’ to stand in for Watts during the 13-date No Filter tour of the US
Keith Richards, 77, added: ‘We’re back on the road! See you there!’
The opening night at The Dome at America’s Centre is followed by rescheduled stops in Charlotte, Pittsburgh, Nashville, Minneapolis, Tampa, Dallas, Atlanta, Detroit and Austin.
The band has also added three new dates, including the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival – their first time playing there – on October 13, Los Angeles’ newly built SoFi Stadium on October 17, and in Las Vegas on November 6.
Watts added last night: ‘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 disappointment with delays to the tour caused by Covid, I really don’t want the many Stones fans in the States who have been holding tickets to have another postponement or cancellation.’
Reacting to the news, musician Peter Frampton sent his best wishes to the drummer.
He said: ‘Sending all love and strength to #CharlieWatts. He’s recovering from emergency surgery but doing fine. He will not be playing on the Stones upcoming tour.’
Singer Sheryl Crow, who has performed live with the Stones several times, said: ‘Praying for a speedy recovery for Charlie!’
‘I can’t think of anyone else who could fill Charlie Watts’ shoes! Steve Jordan is a true rocker and one of the greatest drummers of all time.’
The Rolling Stones were formed in London in 1962 by Mick Jagger, Keith Richards and Brian Jones along with bassist Bill Wyman. Watts joined the group the next year.
The core lineup of Jagger, Richards and Watts has remained the same ever since, although Wyman left the band in 1993 after tiring of touring.
Reacting to the news, musician Peter Frampton and singer Sheryl Crow sent their best wishes to the drummer
Guitarist Ronnie Wood joined the group in 1975 after Mick Taylor, who had himself been brought to replace Brian Jones shortly before his death, quit.
The band were at the forefront of the British cultural ‘Invasion’ of the US in the 1960s, rivalled only by the Beatles, with eight consecutive number 1 albums in the US from 1971.
The Stones have sold more than 200 million records, with hits including (I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction, Street Fighting Man and You Can’t Always Get What You Want.
In recent years they have mounted some of highest grossing tours in history, with their A Bigger Bang tour earned more than $500 million between 2005 and 2007.
Their ongoing No Filter tour started in 2017, spanning 60 shows over four legs of the US and Europe.
Their latest release Blue & Lonesome, a series of blues-based covers, came out in 2016.
In a recent interview Ronnie Wood revealed the band has been working on a new album which could be released next year to tie in with their 60th anniversary.
Coming soon: The first night of the tour at The Dome is followed by rescheduled stops in Charlotte, Pittsburgh, Nashville, Minneapolis, Tampa, Dallas, Atlanta, Detroit and Austin
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