The Life and Legacy of Legend Charlie Watts

A neon sign of the infamous Rolling Stones logo, the band Charlie was a part of. Photo by

Nate Baker, Staff Writer

Charlie Robert Watts was a musician born in 1941, in London. His early musical career began with drumming for various café shows, and temporary get-togethers. For a year, he played in a jazz band called Jo Jones All Stars. It lasted until he was invited to join Blues Incorporated by Alexis Korner. He would only stay in this band for a few months. During his time with Blues Incorporated, he would also support a job with Charles, Hobson, and Gray, an advertising firm. He would meet Brian Jones, Ian Stewart, Mick Jagger, and Keith Richards the same year, in the many blues clubs Watts played at.  

Roswell teacher Derek Shackleford gave his opinion on his death and said “Oh it was so horrible because he was such a music icon. He was a great jazz artist and drummer. He was known to always be the one who stood out from the rest of the band and was calm. Yes, it was a massive bummer when I heard the news. 

The following year, in 1963, Charlie accepted an invitation to join the band and was not initially paid. In his career as a Rolling Stones drummer, he would produce 30 studio albums, and 33 live albums alongside the other members. 

Watts met his soulmate, Shirley Ann Shepar, in 1964, and they would marry in the same year. His first, and only child, Sabrina Watts, was born in 1968. He kept a healthy relationship with her until his passing. He stayed loyal to Shirley, never having relations with another woman.  

He joined a band called Rocket 88 in the late 1970’s with Ian Stewart. This band also featured many of England’s top names in jazz. He would continue playing with multiple other bands and reuniting with the Rolling Stones many times until 2019, where he performed his last live concert. He would end up passing away Aug. 24, 2021. The cause of death was undisclosed. Charlie never ended up having a driver’s license, although he had a massive collection of vintage, and rare cars, as he thought they were beautiful in their own way, without the satisfaction of driving.