Rolling Stones drummer Charlie Watts set to miss US tour dates

Rolling Stones drummer Charlie Watts is expected to miss the band’s forthcoming US tour dates as he recovers from an unspecified medical procedure.

“For once my timing has been a little off,” the 80-year-old said in a statement, revealing he had been told it would “take a while” for him to “get fully fit”.

Sir Mick Jagger said the band looked forward to welcoming Watts back “as soon as he is fully recovered”.

Steve Jordan will fill in when the Stones resume their No Filter Tour in September.

The US musician has worked with Stones guitarist Keith Richards on his side project X-Pensive Winos and is also a member of the John Mayer Trio.

Watts’ spokesman said that while his procedure had been “completely successful”, the drummer had been told by doctors he needs “proper rest and recuperation”.

He said it was “very disappointing” that Watts was unlikely to be able to go back on the road at present, adding that “no-one saw this coming“.

Watts said: “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 [Rolling Stones] fans who have been holding tickets for this tour to be disappointed by another postponement or cancellation.”

The Stones’ first concert will be in St Louis on 26 September, with dates to follow in Dallas, Nashville and other US cities.

They will be the legendary band’s first performances since the virtual rendition of You Can’t Always Get What You Want during the One World: Together At Home concert in April 2020.

Jordan said it was an “absolute honour and privilege” to be Watts’ understudy.

“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,” the 64-year-old added.

Sheryl Crow welcomed his appointment, describing Jordan as “a true rocker and one of the greatest drummers of all time”.

The US singer joined other musicians in wishing Watts “a speedy recovery”.

Watts was previously treated for throat cancer in 2004.

He has been a member of the Stones since January 1963, when he joined Jagger, Richards and Brian Jones in their fledgling group. BBC

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