A Conversation with Charlie Watts (1981)

SKF NOTE: This interview with Charlie Watts took place in Charlie’s New York City hotel room on November 12, 1981. The Rolling Stones were on tour in America. Tina Turner was their opening act. The basic back story to this interview is posted here.

Since finding and reading the actual August/September 1982 Modern Drummer just yesterday, I am reminded that MD‘s Charlie Watts cover story is two parts: Robyn Flans‘s profile of Charlie, and the conversation Max Weinberg and I had with Charlie. I am including here the Fish/Weinberg/Watts conversation. MD‘s 1982 intro gives a better background story than I remembered. Here it is:

The following articles on Charlie Watts are the result of over two year’s worth of effort on the part of MD. There were numerous phone calls to record companies and management offices, where the answer was always the same: “Charlie Watts does not do interviews.”

Last fall, while the Rolling Stones were on tour in America, Charlie met up with his friend (and MD Advisory Board member) Jim Keltner, who persuaded Charlie to talk to us. (Thanks, Jim.) [Charlie] agreed to speak with MD’s Robyn Flans in L.A., but it was only after Robyn followed him to San Francisco that [Charlie] finally sat down in front of a tape recorder.

A month later, MD Managing Editor Scott K. Fish set up a meeting with Charlie and E Street Band drummer Max Weinberg. Again, Charlie agreed to let a tape roll. So here then is Charlie Watts who, although he actually spoke to us twice, began each session by saying, “I don’t do interviews. But we can talk if you want to….”

[SKF NOTE: 6/17/17 – Charlie Watts’s full interview is now available on MD‘s Archive Page.]


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