PRNewsFoto/Legacy RecordingsIf Van Morrison‘s career had ended in 1964, he’d still be remembered for having penned the immortal, much-covered garage-rock classic, “Gloria,” with his early band, Them.

Now RollingStone.com is streaming a demo version of the song, which will be included on a a recently reported comprehensive compilation of the recordings by Them, the blues- and soul-influenced rock ‘n’ roll band that Morrison formed when he was a teenager.

The demo version of “Gloria” shows the historic song in an early stage of development. The lyrics and call-and-response vocals are in place, but the band plays the song tentatively, in an arrangement heavy on maracas and vocals and at a slower tempo than the final, master take. The performance also has yet to develop the wild energy and slashing guitar that would make the final version of “Gloria” one of the most covered songs in rock history.

The “Gloria” demo is just one of two dozen rarities, alternate takes and previously unreleased live performances featured on The Complete Them 1964-1967, which also will include all of the tracks from the band’s two studio albums with Morrison, as well as non-album singles. The compilation will be released December 4 as a three-CD set and a digital download.

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