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Lunch Hour Special (Thursday 6/2/16)

Updated: Jun 19, 2019

It's Charlie Watts' 75th birthday. An hour full of the Rolling Stones' drummer in action!

I sent out word a few days ago to some of my drummer buddies asking "What would play for Charlie's birthday?" Here's the list (with some commentary to boot).

  • (I Can't Get No) Satisfaction - critic Dave Marsh lists this as #2 in his 1001 Greatest Singles book The Heart Of Rock & Soul. "Charlie Watts and Bill Wyman have never meshed so perfectly...."

  • Street Fighting Man - Dave Marsh ranks this at #139. Rolling Stone puts it at #295. "Charlie Watts driving drumming amounts to a military attack," says Marsh.

  • Get Off My Cloud - Dave Marsh ranks it at #56 and calls it "the most explosive drumming Charlie Watts (or damn near anybody) has ever done."

  • Bitch - from Sticky Fingers, requested by my old junior high school buddy (and drummer) Mark Hirsch.

  • Beast Of Burden - Radio London drummer Danny Lashkoff says "absolutely brilliant performance"

  • Paint It, Black - same drummer Danny says it contains "the coolest fill ever" (right after the third verse)

  • Tumblin' Dice - from Exile On Main Street. Dave Marsh says "Charlie Watts once more lays his modest claim as the real heart of the Stones with the fills at the end." He ranks it at #244.

  • Slow Turning - John Hiatt - this came in as a request, because JH sings "Now I'm in my car * I got the radio on * I'm yellin' at the kids in the back seat * 'Cause they're bangin' like Charlie Watts" - insert short segment from Get Yer Ya-Yas Out when Mick says "Charlie's good tonight!"

  • Jumpin' Jack Flash - two of my drummer buddies suggested this one

  • Miss You - Curtis Kretz (of Answer The Muse) called this one

  • Bluebird - Charlie Watts with a Jazz quartet. The album is called "From One Charlie" (a tribute to Charlie Parker). Thanks to John Beach.

  • Ruby Tuesday - this was supposed to be the b-side, but it went to #1. Charlie does a metronomic roll before each chorus.

We close with this 1979 quote from Keith Richards:

"Charlie's always there, but he doesn't want to let everybody know. There's very few drummers like that. Everybody thinks Mick and Keith are the Rolling Stones. If Charlie wasn't doing what he's doing on drums, that wouldn't be true at all. You'd find out that Charlie Watts IS the Stones."