Travelling With Charlie Watts

Many years ago, around 1966 I was a student at St Martin’s School of Art (as it was called in those days) which is in Charing Cross Road, London.   Immediately opposite is Denmark Street, a small street where loads of music companies used to have their offices.

OK, so why the guided tour of London you ask?   Well simply enough, it is because among others, the Rolling Stones who were beginning to be very famous had an office there as well, so we saw a lot of the band as they went about their affairs there.

At the time I lived in a suburb of London called Brixton, which I travelled to and from via the London Underground every day, and it so happened that Charlie Watts also lived down that way, thus he frequently used the underground to get to and from home, and he and I used to chat about life and such things as we went home of an evening.   Very nice guy, by the way.

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Anyhow, the point of this farrago is the way other travellers reacted to seeing Charlie Watts sitting there.   People sort of gazed at him, did double takes, but simply couldn’t believe it was really him, as of course, Rock Stars do not travel around in the underground – They travel in huge limos with body guards and so on……

For his part, Charlie Watts simply ignored everyone and behaved as if it was a perfectly normal thing for him to be on the underground, reasonably enough, and didn’t react to their stares.

In due time most people simply assumed it was a young man who looked remarkably like Charlie Watts and left it at that – But it was Charlie Watts.

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