Grammy winner Steve Jordan will replace Charlie Watts in the Rolling Stones “No Filter” U.S. Tour after an undisclosed medical procedure prompted Watts to drop out of the tour. Watts called Jordan, who is a member of Stones guitarist Keith Richards’ side project X-Pensive Winos, a “great friend.”
“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,” a spokesperson for the band said. “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,” Watts said in a statement. “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 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.”
Watts, 80, was diagnosed with throat cancer in 2004 and survived operations to remove his lymph nodes and underwent radio therapy. In 2011, he told BBC 6 Music that he thought he was going to die following his diagnosis.
Jordan previously appeared in a 1986 Stones release, “Dirty Work,” in place of Charlie Watts. Most recently, Jordan paired up with his wife, Meegan Voss, in a band titled “The Verbs,” which toured Japan in 2007.
“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. 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,” Jordan said.
Richards in a tweet early Thursday said that the news was “a bit of a blow to all of us,” but that the Stones are all “wishing for Charlie to have a speedy recovery.” See the band’s full statement below: