Rolling Stones drummer Charlie Watts dies aged 80

Rolling Stones drummer Charlie Watts has died. He was 80 years old.

Watts was born in London in 1941. His parents bought him a drum kit when he was a child, and he practiced while listening to jazz music.

He worked for an advertising agency before joining the Rolling Stones in 1963.

Watts was known as a reticent, cool drummer in contrast to the band's flamboyant singer Mick Jagger and guitarist Keith Richards.

The Stones were due to begin a US tour next month, but Watts had opted out for health reasons.

A statement posted on the band's official Twitter on Tuesday said Watts passed away peacefully in a London hospital, surrounded by his family.

The statement called Watts "a cherished husband, father and grandfather, and one of the greatest drummers of his generation."

Musicians have been paying tribute to Watts.

Former Beatle Paul McCartney expressed shock and sadness in a video message on Twitter. He offered condolences to the other Stones bandmates and also said Watts was a "fantastic drummer."

Elton John said on Twitter, "A very sad day. Charlie Watts was the ultimate drummer. The most stylish of men and such brilliant company."