Rolling Stones feel Charlie Watts' 'spirit'

·2-min read

Ronnie Wood has insisted the late Charlie Watts is still with the Rolling Stones "in spirit".
The drummer passed away in August aged 80 and though his bandmates still find it strange being on stage without him, the 'Wild Horses' hitmakers can feel his presence.
Asked if it feels strange performing without Charlie, Ronnie said: "It is, yeah, but his spirit is there. He loved his girls and his wife. Everyone’s handled it really well and I’m sure he’s with us all the time when we’re playing."
The 74-year-old guitarist recalled visiting Charlie just four days before he passed away and admitted the musician was "doing fine" at the time, only to then react badly to additional treatment.
Speaking on Ireland's 'Late Late Show', he said: "We were two days into rehearsal with Steve Jordan [session drummer] with Charlie’s blessing and we knew he was in hospital, so we said we’ll play for you and pray for you, so we carried on.
"I saw him a couple of days before he passed. He was in my bed. He was in the Royal Marsden Hospital in London in the Ronnie Wood Suite and he said, 'I can’t wait to get out of here’ and I said, `'Well come out, Charlie, in your own good time.'
"At that time, he was doing fine and then he had some extra treatments he didn’t handle well, and he went down from there."
Ronnie himself has battled cancer in recent years and he's thankful he's recently received the all-clear again at his annual check-up, so urged other sufferers to keep a "positive attitude" and be ready to "fight".
He said: "I had lung cancer in 2017 and I said, 'When can you get it out?’ and they said 'What are you doing next Wednesday?’, and I said, 'Too late for me’, so we did it on the Monday, so we got that out.
"Throughout it all I maintained a real positive attitude and I thought if I can help anyone who is suffering from the same thing.
"Because sure enough when I had recovered from the lung cancer, I was invaded by the worst kind of cancer. It’s called small-cell and it’s all across the chest and it hides in the brain, so I had to have really heavy chemo and radiation and they said they’d given me a year’s worth of medication in three weeks and my body just jumped to defence.
"I have had my fourth all-clear the day before yesterday so anybody who knows anybody who has cancer, tell them to be positive and fight it. You have to go up another gear and fight it."

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