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Rolling Stones drummer Charlie Watts dies at age 80; once recorded in Muscle Shoals

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Rolling Stones drummer Charlie Watts dies at age 80; once recorded in Muscle Shoals

Charlie Watts

LONDON (AP) - Rolling Stones drummer Charlie Watt has died at the age of 80, according to his publicist.

Bernard Doherty said Tuesday that Watts “passed away peacefully in a London hospital earlier today surrounded by his family.”

The drummer provided the backbone of the Rolling Stones’ songs for more than half a century.

Watts had announced he would not tour with the Stones in 2021 because of an undefined health issue.

He joined the Stones early in 1963 and ranked just behind Mick Jagger and Keith Richards as the group’s longest lasting and most essential member.

Watts and The Rolling Stones came to the Muscle Shoals Sound Studio in 1969 to record three songs: "Brown Sugar," "Wild Horses" and "You Gotta Move."

This quote is attributed to Watts in the book According to the Rolling Stones: “The Muscle Shoals Studio was very special, though – a great studio to work in, a very hip studio, where the drums were on a riser high up in the air, plus you wanted to be there because of all the guys who had worked in the same studio.”

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