“So sad to hear about Charlie Watts, the Stones drummer dying,” McCartney said. “He was a lovely guy, and I knew he was ill, but I didn’t know he was this ill. So lots of love to his family, his wife and kids, his extended family. And condolences to the Stones, it will be a huge blow to them because Charlie was a rock. A fantastic drummer, steady as a rock. Love you Charlie. I’ve always loved you, beautiful man. Great condolences and sympathies to his family.”
Starr added on his own Twitter: “God bless Charlie Watts. We’re going to miss you, man. Peace and love to the family.”
Other artists (collected by Rolling Stone Magazine) from Elton John (“The most stylish of men, and such brilliant company”) to Graham Nash (“Charlie Watts was the heartbeat of the Rolling Stones”) also offered condolences. His death comes weeks after the Stones announced Watt wouldn’t be participating in the upcoming No Filter tour, which kicks off in late September. “For once, my timing has been a little off,” he joked.
Pete Townshend also offered a touching tribute. The Who guitarist posted a photo of a rainbow on Instagram, captioning it, “Full Moon. Rainbow. Always a sign. Charlie Watts wept at Keith Moon’s funeral. I wish I was capable of such tears today. Instead, I just want to say goodbye. Not a rock drummer, a jazz drummer really, and that’s why the Stones swung like the Basie band!! Such a lovely man. God bless his wife and daughter, and I’ll bet the horses will miss him too.”