Charlie Watts provided the foundation that underpinned the music of the Rolling Stones. The band became a by-word for rock ‘n’ roll excess but for Watts, playing with the Stones did not become the ego trip that drove Mick Jagger and Keith Richards. A jazz aficionado, Watts vied with Bill Wyman for the title of least charismatic member of the band; he eschewed the limelight and rarely gave interviews. And he famously described life with the Stones as five years of playing, 20 years of hanging around. Charles Robert Watts was born on 2 June 1941 at the University College Hospital in London and was raised in Kingsbury, now part of the London Borough of Brent. His father was a lorry driver and Watts was brought up in a prefabricated house to which the family had moved after German bombs destroyed hundreds of houses in the area. A childhood friend once described how Watts had an early interest in jazz and recalled listening to 78s in Charlie’s bedroom by artists such as Jelly Roll Morton and Charlie Parker.