“Mary, Mary” is a song written by Michael Nesmith. It was first recorded by The Butterfield Blues Band for their 1966 album, East-West. Nesmith’s band, The Monkees, also recorded the song. Hip hop group, Run–D.M.C., revived the song in the late 1980s with a cover version that hit the R&B and pop charts in the United States.
Run–D.M.C. covered “Mary, Mary” in a rap rock version. It was released as a single from their fourth album, Tougher Than Leather, in 1988. It was released by Profile Records and produced by the group along with Rick Rubin. It was their most successful single from the album, being the only one to make it to the Billboard Hot 100, peaking at number 75, and peaking at number 29 on the Hot Black Singles chart.
Run-D.M.C. changed the line “Mary, Mary, where ya’ goin’ to” to “Mary, Mary, why ya’ buggin'”. Although Run-D.M.C. replaced Michael Nesmith’s original lyrics with a new set of lyrics of their own, Nesmith was the only writer credited on Run-D.M.C.’s single. Run-D.M.C.’s version samples Micky Dolenz singing the title from the Monkees’ recording.