Paul McCartney pays tribute to Rolling Stones drummer Charlie Watts

‘He was a rock’: Paul McCartney pays tribute to Rolling Stones drummer Charlie Watts after his death aged 80 as he tells fans in new video ‘I knew he was ill, but I didn’t know he was this ill’

Paul McCartney has paid tribute to Rolling Stones drummer Charlie Watts after his death aged 80 on Tuesday.

Sharing a video on Twitter, Paul, 79, addressed his followers in the candid clip, hailing Charlie as ‘a rock’ and ‘fantastic drummer’ before revealing: ‘I knew he was ill, but I didn’t know he was this ill.’

Charlie’s death was confirmed shortly before Beatles rocker Paul released his clip, with a statement confirming he had ‘passed away peacefully in hospital surrounded by his family’.

Tribute: Paul McCartney, 79, has paid tribute to Rolling Stones drummer Charlie Watts after his death aged 80 on Tuesday in a new Twitter video 

Sitting at home, Paul said in full: ‘So sad to hear about Charlie Watts. He was a lovely guy, and I knew he was ill, but I didn’t know he was this ill.’

He continued: ‘So lots of love to his family and condolences to the Stones. It will be a huge blow to them because Charlie was a rock and a fantastic drummer.’

The rockstar concluded: ‘Love you Charlie. I’ll always love you. Beautiful man. Great condolences and sympathies.’

Charlie joined the then-fledgling Rolling Stones in 1963 after meeting Mick Jagger, Keith Richards and Brian Jones while playing in rhythm and blues clubs.

Rest In Peace: Celebrities including Elton John, Bryan Adams and Beatles legend Ringo Starr have paid tribute to Rolling Stones drummer Charlie after his death aged 80 (Charlie pictured in 2017) 

Fantastic drummer: Paul addressed his followers in the candid clip, hailing Charlie as ‘a rock’ and ‘fantastic drummer’ before revealing: ‘I knew he was ill, but I didn’t know he was this ill’

Along with Jagger and Richards, he featured on every one of the band’s studio albums and was widely regarded as one of the greatest drummers of all time.

Watts was due to tour the US with the band later this year. But it was announced earlier this month he would not feature due to a recent emergency surgery.

Watts’ London publicist, Bernard Doherty, said in a statement on Tuesday: ‘It is with immense sadness that we announce the death of our beloved Charlie Watts.

‘He passed away peacefully in a London hospital earlier today surrounded by his family.

‘Charlie was a cherished husband, father and grandfather and also as a member of The Rolling Stones one of the greatest drummers of his generation.

Sad: The death of the London-born drummer was announced on Tuesday – with a statement saying he had ‘passed away peacefully in hospital surrounded by his family (pictured with the Rolling Stones in 2016)

‘We kindly request that the privacy of his family, band members and close friends is respected at this difficult time.’

He leaves behind his wife Shirley (nee Shepherd), daughter Seraphina, born in 1968, and granddaughter Charlotte, born in 1996.

Celebrity tributes flooded in once the news of the iconic drummer’s death broke, with the likes of Elton John, Ringo Starr and Ben Stiller all sharing their condolences.


Watts (pictured left in 2007) was due to tour the US with the band later this year. But it was announced earlier this month Watts (pictured right with The Rolling Stones in 1969) would not feature due to a recent emergency surgery

Elton, 74, took to Instagram to pen a heartfelt message to Charlie, accompanied by a throwback snap of the pair in the 1970s, branding him ‘the ultimate drummer.’

He wrote: ‘A very sad day. Charlie Watts was the ultimate drummer. The most stylish of men, and such brilliant company. My deepest condolences to Shirley, Seraphina and Charlotte. And of course, The Rolling Stones.’

Beatles drummer Ringo, 81, also posted a poignant snap of the pair comparing drumsticks, and wrote: ‘God bless Charlie Watts we’re going to miss you man peace and love to the family Ringo.’

Actor Ben, 55, also shared his condolences on social media.

Missed: Elton, 74, took to social media to pen a heartfelt message to Charlie, accompanied by a throwback snap of the pair in the 1970s, branding him ‘the ultimate drummer’

Condolences: Actor Ben Stiller also shared his condolences on social media

Drummers: Beatles drummer Ringo, 81, also posted a poignant snap of the pair comparing drumsticks, and wrote: ‘God bless Charlie Watts we’re going to miss you man peace and love to the family Ringo’

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