The Version of "Different Drum" that most of us know is the one released by Linda Ronstadt and The Stone Poneys in 1967, but that version was neither the original nor the first cover of the tune. Michael Nesmith of The Monkees penned the tune in 1966, and its first release came later that year on The Greenbriar Boys album Better Late Than Never (if anyone has that version, I'd love to hear it).
Even before that, however, Nesmith managed to sneak the tune onto an episode of The Monkees' TV show (see YouTube clip below). He finally recorded a proper version of the song in 1972 for his album And the Hits Just Keep on Comin'. Nesmith includes the song's fourth verse that Ronstadt left out of her hit.
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