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Ep.174: È morto il leggendario batterista dei Rolling Stones Charlie Watts

Charlie Watts performs with The A,B,C,D of Boogie Woogie at Le New Morning on October 2, 2011 in Paris, France. Source: Redferns

Charlie Watts, il batterista dei Rolling Stones, è morto all’età di 80 anni.

SCARICA la trascrizione col testo a fronte in inglese.     

Italian 

Charlie Watts era il Rolling Stone tranquillo. 

In mezzo a tutti gli scontri tra ego diversi, l’abuso di droga e i disaccordi creativi che il gruppo ha attraversato in sei decadi di super divismo internazionale, era considerato come un’influenza stabilizzante. 

Era anche un batterista estremamente talentuoso. 

Su Instagram, Elton John ha descritto Charlie Watts come "il batterista supremo. L’uomo più stiloso, e di gran compagnia”. 

I Duran Duran hanno detto che era "sin dagli anni ’60 di assoluta ispirazione per una legione di batteristi e un uomo di grazia, stile, dignità e compostezza”. 

Il tranquillo ed elegantemente vestito Watts era considerato come un batterista rock di alto livello, rispettato in tutto il mondo per il suo stile muscolare e swing. 

Si unì presto ai Rolling Stones nel 1963 e rimase nel gruppo per i successivi 60 anni, rimanendo dietro solo a Mick Jagger e Keith Richards come membro più durevole ed essenziale. 

Rob Levine è il vice direttore editoriale della rivista Billboard: 

"Charlie Watts was not showy. He played in the back of the band. He didn't take long drum solos, but he was the heart and soul of that band. It's hard to imagine them without him. In some ways, he was more of a jazz drummer than a rock drummer, and jazz by personality too. I mean, this is a guy whose hobby was, you know, handmade shoes. And, you know, he made the best dressed list. He was a jazz figure in personality. You know, he's a bit - in his sensibility, he's a bit pre baby boom. But maybe for that reason, maybe despite that, I know, he was such an important part of that band." 

Ma anche se è rimasto insieme ad una delle rock band più famose al mondo – ed una che ha continuato ad andare in tour anno dopo anno - Charlie Watts amava stare a casa. 

È stato felicemente sposato con Shirley per 50 anni, ed il suo hobby era collezionare auto d’epoca – anche se non sapeva guidare. 

Semplicemente ci saliva dentro e stava lì. 

Il suo primo amore era il jazz – e spesso aveva definito la sua collaborazione con i Rolling Stones come il suo ‘lavoro di tutti i giorni’ che finanziava il suo amore per il jazz. 

In un documentario della BBC aveva spiegato che l’unico modo per soddisfare la sua passione per la batteria era di andare in tournée, mentre in realtà avrebbe preferito rimanere a casa, circostanza che descrisse come un circolo vizioso. 

“I can't play the drums at home so I walk about, and to play the drums I have to go on the road. To go on the road, I have to leave home. It's like a terribly vicious circle which has always been my life." 

Rob Levine di Billboard ha dichiarato che era quello che lo distingueva dagli altri. 

"The drummer's always supposed to be the crazy one in a rock band. Think about John Bonham, think about Keith Moon, you know, think about Ginger Baker. Charlie Watts is like the normal one in some ways. I mean, he dressed like an extremely - an absurdly wealthy banker." 

Watts è stato l’ultimo ad unirsi ai Rolling Stones; la band aveva cercato per mesi un batterista stabile, ma temeva che Watts fosse troppo esperto per loro. 

Keith Richards ha rivelato che la band lo voleva così disperatamente che i membri tagliarono le spese per permettersi di pagare a Watts uno stipendio adeguato. 

Watts dichiarò che all’inizio pensava che la band sarebbe stata fortunata a durare un anno. 

Rob Levine ha detto che ora è difficile immaginarsi gli Stones senza di lui. 

"What it means for the Stones is hard to say, I mean, Charlie was going to have some medical treatments and then he was going to be replaced temporarily by Steve Jordan. I don't know what they're going to do immediately, but it's - it's very hard to imagine the Stones without him. It is hard to imagine the Rolling Stones without Charlie Watts as it is to imagine the Rolling Stones without Mick and Keith." 

Mick Jagger ha twittato il suo omaggio a Watts – una foto senza parole del batterista che sorride mentre suona le percussioni. 

Il compagno di band Keith Richards ha twittato la foto di un set di percussioni vuoto, ed un cartello appeso con scritto ‘Chiuso’. 

English 

Charlie Watts was the quiet Rolling Stone. 

Amidst all the ego clashes, drug abuse and creative disagreements the band went through in six decades of international super-stardom, he was regarded as a steadying influence. 

He was also an extremely talented drummer. 

On Instagram, Elton John described Charlie Watts as "the ultimate drummer. The most stylish of men, and such brilliant company". 

Duran Duran said he was "an absolute inspiration to a legion of drummers since the 1960s and a man of grace, style, dignity and composure." 

The quiet, elegantly dressed Watts was ranked as a premier rock drummer, respected worldwide for his muscular, swinging style. 

He joined the Rolling Stones early in 1963 and remained over the next 60 years, ranking just behind Mick Jagger and Keith Richards as the group’s longest lasting and most essential member. 

Rob Levine is the deputy Editorial Director of Billboard magazine: 

"Charlie Watts was not showy. He played in the back of the band. He didn't take long drum solos, but he was the heart and soul of that band. It's hard to imagine them without him. In some ways, he was more of a jazz drummer than a rock drummer, and jazz by personality too. I mean, this is a guy whose hobby was, you know, handmade shoes. And, you know, he made the best dressed list. He was a jazz figure in personality. You know, he's a bit - in his sensibility, he's a bit pre baby boom. But maybe for that reason, maybe despite that, I know, he was such an important part of that band." 

But while he may have been with one of the most famous rock bands in the world - and one that continued touring, year after year - Charlie Watts loved home life. 

He was happily married to Shirley for 50 years, and his hobby was collecting classic cars - even though he couldn't drive. 

He would simply go and sit in them. 

His first love was jazz - and he often referred to being with the Rolling Stones as a 'day job' which financed his love for jazz. 

In a BBC documentary he explained that the only way he could indulge his passion for drumming was to be out on the road when he would rather be at home, which he described as a vicious circle. 

“I can't play the drums at home so I walk about, and to play the drums I have to go on the road. To go on the road, I have to leave home. It's like a terribly vicious circle which has always been my life." 

Billboard's Rob Levine says that set Watts apart. 

"The drummer's always supposed to be the crazy one in a rock band. Think about John Bonham, think about Keith Moon, you know, think about Ginger Baker. Charlie Watts is like the normal one in some ways. I mean, he dressed like an extremely - an absurdly wealthy banker." 

Watts was the final man to join the Rolling Stones; the band had searched for months to find a permanent drummer, but they feared Watts was too accomplished for them. 

Keith Richards says the band wanted him so badly to join that members cut down on expenses so they could afford to pay Watts a proper salary. 

Watts said he believed at first the band would be lucky to last a year. 

Rob Levine says now, it's difficult to imagine the Stones without him. 

"What it means for the Stones is hard to say, I mean, Charlie was going to have some medical treatments and then he was going to be replaced temporarily by Steve Jordan. I don't know what they're going to do immediately, but it's - it's very hard to imagine the Stones without him. It is hard to imagine the Rolling Stones without Charlie Watts as it is to imagine the Rolling Stones without Mick and Keith." 

Mick Jagger tweeted his own tribute to Watts - a picture, without words, of the drummer smiling while playing drums. 

Fellow band member Keith Richards tweeted a picture of an empty drum kit, with a sign hanging on it, saying 'Closed'. 

Report by Allan Lee

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