Destiny: Rare Ska Sides From Studio One

This nineteen-track collection — offering material not previously available on CD, much of it made in the mid-Sixties — amounts to a Before They Were Rock Stars peek behind the curtain, capturing the preacherlike incantations and craftily gathered harmonies that would become integral to Bob Marley and the Wailers' later greatness. Without knowing anything of the early history of the Wailers, Destiny allows one to make some educated guesses about the kinds of music they loved, and studied, before reaching international acclaim. Hearing "Your Love," for example, you might deduce that they learned to harmonize by singing doo-wop, gospel hymns and American R&B. There is very little that's earth-shattering on this album, and some of its pieces are rudimentary exercises in harmony singing, but the highlights — the Bob Marley-Bunny Wailer duet "Where Is My Mother," the durable ska boast "I Stand Predominant," the rapturous treatment of Alex Bradford's "Let the Lord Be Seen in You" — illustrate that this spirit-driven collective was almost effortlessly multicultural, right from the start.