Charlie Watts likely to miss start of Rolling Stones' US tour on doctor's orders

Charlie Watts onstage
(Image credit: Suzanne Cordeiro/Getty Images)

Drummer Charlie Watts is likely to miss out on the resumption of the Rolling Stones' No Filter tour, which picks up at The Dome at America’s Center in St. Louis on September 26.

A statement released by Watts' representatives reads: "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. 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."

“For once my timing has been a little off," says Watts. "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 Rolling Stones 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."

Jordan was a member of Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards' side project the X-Pensive Winos, is currently a member of the John Mayer Trio, and was also a member of the house band on TV shows Saturday Night Live and Late Night With David Letterman.

“It is an absolute honour and a privilege to be Charlie’s understudy and I am looking forward to rehearsing with Mick, Keith and Ronnie," says Jordan. "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.”

In May 2019 the Stones had to postpone the first North American leg of the tour as frontman Mick Jagger had to have an operation on his heart. Jagger avoided major surgery by having a “minimally invasive procedure” to replace a heart valve in New York and later checked in to give fans an update on his health, saying he was “on the mend.”

In 2020, the band postponed another set of US dates in the wake of lockdown, but the rescheduled shows were confirmed last month. Full schedule below.

The Rolling Stones US Tour Dates 2021

Sep 26: St. Louis The Dome at America’s Center, MO
Sep 30: Charlotte Bank Of America Stadium, NC
Oct 04: Pittsburgh Heinz Field, PA
Oct 09: Nashville Nissan Stadium, TN
Oct 13: New Orleans New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, LA
Oct 17: Los Angeles SoFi Stadium, CA
Oct 24: Minneapolis U.S. Bank Stadium, MN
Oct 29: Tampa Raymond James Stadium, FL
Nov 02: Dallas Cotton Bowl Stadium, TX
Nov 06: Las Vegas Allegiant Stadium, NV
Nov 11: Atlanta Mercedes-Benz Stadium, GA
Nov 15: Detroit Ford Field, MI
Nov 20: Austin Circuit of The Americas, TX

Fraser Lewry

Online Editor at Louder/Classic Rock magazine since 2014. 38 years in music industry, online for 25. Also bylines for: Metal Hammer, Prog Magazine, The Word Magazine, The Guardian, The New Statesman, Saga, Music365. Former Head of Music at Xfm Radio, A&R at Fiction Records, early blogger, ex-roadie, published author. Once appeared in a Cure video dressed as a cowboy, and thinks any situation can be improved by the introduction of cats. Favourite Serbian trumpeter: Dejan Petrović.