Rolling Stones fans around the globe were left devastated following the sad news of the death of the band’s Charlie Watts.
The talented drummer died aged 80 this month peacefully surrounded by his family at a London hospital.
His bandmates – Keith Richards, Sir Mick Jagger and Ronnie Wood – had shared their own tributes and The Rolling Stones have posted a video to honour the late musician.
The two-minute clip, shared on social media, featured a montage of Watts from his almost 60-year career with the band, from the early days to modern tours.
He was seen smiling alongside Richards, Sir Mick and Wood.
In a throwback clip, Watts discussed being invited to join The Rolling Stones in 1963, admitting he thought they would only last a year before folding.
In another piece of footage, he tossed a drumstick into an adoring crowd after being labelled “The Wembley Whammer” by Sir Mick.
Throughout the montage, Watts, famously the most level-headed of the group, appeared smartly dressed in tailor-made suits – another of his hallmarks.
The tribute finished with an image of his drum kit with a “closed” sign hanging from it.
We thought it would be appropriate at Looking Back to do our own tribute to Charlie, who played a concert at the Gaumont on August 24, 1964.
The band carried out a tour of the west country from August 18 to 30 1964, performing daily concerts.
Website The Rolling Stones Chronicle says: “The group performed its first concerts on the Channel Isles (Guernsey and St. Helier) and across south west England (Weymouth, Weston-super-Mare, Exeter, Plymouth, Torquay). They also played again in Bournemouth and Taunton.”
At the Weymouth gig bouncers had to keep hysterical girls away from the stage.
John Sissons, who was at the Weymouth gig, said: “Charlie Watts will always be a legend. His music lives on. I’ve been playing tonight the Rolling Stones first album. It is and always will be one of my all time favourites. Yes I was there too way back in 1964 at the treasured Gaumont. Treasured memories.”
While the Stones were in the area for the gig they stayed at the Kings Arms in Dorchester.
Such was the fever among fans at the time, Stephanie Cox said her dad looked after the band at Weymouth Police Station until it was time for them to go to The Gaumont.
Jo Kempster said: “My mum was there. She was forever telling me.”
Lin Pearson, who went to the gig, said: “It was fantastic.”
Weymouth’s Gaumont Theatre
The gig holds particular special memories for Liz Blount. She said: “They came to my Mum’s hotel, the Wyke House Hotel, after the gig, for drinks at the Cellar Bar run by my sister June Kent and her then husband George, now both sadly also deceased. They all signed their names on the Cellar Bar ceiling, it was a very exciting event for us! I was 12, I remember sitting – fascinated – on the stairs down to the Cellar Bar (chianti bottles with wax and candles, beer barrel tables all there!), watching the antics. The signatures came down with Hotel when it was demolished and rebuilt as a housing estate. Happy days.”
Graham Ryan remembers: “I went to book up to see the Stones at the Gaumont but they were sold out, because the amount of people were sat on furniture all the way up St Thomas street so ended up seeing the Hollies in there instead.”
Someone who did get a ticket was Brenda Poole. She remembers: “My friend’s dad was a postie and he dropped us off around 5am to buy the tickets and think we were just round from William Whittles florist in the queue.”
Ann Ford told us: “I saw them at the Gaumont, even then they were amazing.”
Thanks to you all for your wonderful memories of Charlie and the band.
To share more memories like these, join our Facebook nostalgia group We Grew Up in Weymouth and Portland here