The Only Drummer Who Replaced Charlie Watts In The Rolling Stones

Charlie Watts was a prolific drummer who became one of the greats during his tenure with the Rolling Stones between 1963 and 2021. Watts’ first appearance with the band as a permanent member was in February 1963, and he performed on every one of the Stones’ studio albums. On top of that, his tenure with the band lasted for 58 years, so it was tough for the fans to think about a replacement for Watts.

Sadly, Watts passed on August 24, 2021, surrounded by his family. At the time of his death, the drummer was 80. After the sad news, many of Watts’ fellow musicians paid tribute to him. However, there was an issue — the Rolling Stones had several scheduled tour dates. Many of their fans argued there could be no Rolling Stones without Watts, but the band decided to move on. Seeing that Charlie Watts was a significant figure in the Stones, it’s surprising to learn that a drummer once replaced him in the band.

Who Replaced Charlie Watts In Rolling Stones As The Drummer?

On March 15, 1964, Rolling Stones performed at Invicta Ballroom, Chatham, England. However, Charlie Watts wasn’t present during the show because he had failed to return from his vacation. Back then, he was friends with another drummer named Mickey Waller. So, Waller filled in for Watts and played drums for the Stones at the gig.

Apart from the Rolling Stones, Mickey Waller played with many big names on the UK rock and blues scene after he embarked on a career as a professional musician. He worked with those artists as a member of their bands or as a session musician. Moreover, his first professional band was named the Flee-Rekkers.

After leaving the Flee-Rekkers, Waller joined Joe Brown & the Bruvvers. In July 1963, he became a member of Cyril Davies R&B All Stars, replacing Carlo Little. When Davies died in 1964, Waller went on to play with Marty Wilde And The Wildecats and Little Richard. The drummer joined the Stones as Watts’ fill-in during that period.

With his contributions to the band, Charlie Watts became an irreplaceable figure in the Rolling Stones’ career. As a result, many fans didn’t want the Stones to continue after the drummer’s death. Although he remained irreplaceable for decades, Mickey Waller was the only one who was able to fill in for his long-time friend.