The Rolling Stones’ Charlie Watts Makes Surprise Appearance at Detroit Jazz Show

Charlie Watts gave some Rolling Stones fans a jazzy treat on Tuesday night in Detroit.

The drummer sat in with Band2, a group led by Stones touring saxophonist (and Detroit native) Tim Ries that also features bassist Darryl Jones and backing vocalist Bernard Fowler, at the intimate The Music Box inside the Max M. Fisher Music Center, home to the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. Watts, sporting a black leather jacket, a red sweatshirt and a smile, was introduced by Ries as “a new young drummer just on the scene” and joined the group for renditions of the 1930s standards “For All We Know” or “All Or Nothing At All,” both of which were popularized by Frank Sinatra. Watts stuck around for the entirety of Band2’s 90-minute show, watching from the wings at stage left.

Band2 — which on Tuesday featured Detroit trumpeter Dwight Adams, a fixture in Stevie Wonder’s band — also played arrangements of the Stones’ “Honky Tonk Women,” “Lady Jane,” “Miss You” and “Wild Horses,” and Ries brought on a local singer named Alicia Michilli for a powerhouse rendition of Etta James’ “I’d Rather Go Blind.” Ries recognized several hometown connections during the night, recalling that he first saw bassist Jones play with Miles Davis at Detroit’s Fox Theatre, where the Stones entourage had a tour party on Monday night. He also introduced his daughters, who flew in from New York, as well as his sister.

The Stones perform Wednesday night at Detroit’s Comerica part and play on Saturday in Buffalo before wrapping the Zip Code Tour on July 15 at Le Festival D’Ete de Quebec in Quebec.