Charlie Watts, the drummer of the legendary British rock'n'roll band the Rolling Stones, died on Tuesday at the age of 80, his publicist said.
"It is with immense sadness that we announce the death of our beloved Charlie Watts. He passed away peacefully in a London hospital earlier today surrounded by his family," publicist Bernard Doherty said in a statement.
"Charlie was a cherished husband, father and grandfather and also, as a member of the Rolling Stones, one of the greatest drummers of his generation. We kindly request that the privacy of his family, band members and close friends is respected at this difficult time."
Watts was known as the quiet man of the riotous band, which helped define the Swinging Sixties with timeless hits such as 'Jumpin' Jack Flash' and '(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction.'
His level head off the stage was reflected in his metronomic time-keeping on stage, counterbalancing the energy and charisma of singer Mick Jagger and guitarists Keith Richards and Ronnie Wood.
Watts announced earlier this month that he would miss the resumption of the Rolling Stones' tour of the United States next month after undergoing a medical procedure.
The remaining three members of the Stones on Wednesday posted poignant tributes.
Rolling Stones guitarist Ronnie Wood posted a photo of himself and Watts on Twitter Wednesday, writing: "I love you my fellow Gemini. I will dearly miss you. You are the best."
Frontman Mick Jagger posted a photograph of Watts smiling broadly as he sat at the drum kit, while Keith Richards posted a photo of Watts' drum kit on stage with a "closed" sign hanging on it.
Paul McCartney said in a video message posted online Tuesday that "Charlie was a rock and a fantastic drummer."
Fellow British star Elton John joined top musicians around the world in paying their respects, from Liam Gallagher to Sheryl Crow, Ringo Starr and Lenny Kravitz.