Stories of Mike Nesmith being involved are as different as night and day. Some say that with Nesmith in a successful solo career that he didn't want anything to do with a Monkees reunion. Nesmith's solo career was starting on its downside at this time but maybe he just wanted to focus on getting it back on track. A different point of view is from Peter who said that Mike had not been asked to join in on any of the reunions at that point. Another rumor is that Mike was on this Christmas single playing the Steel Guitar but not credited when it was released. That is the one I like to believe but I have no idea if it is true.
The song was co-written by the Turtles Howard Kaylan and produced by former Monkees producer Chip Douglas. The B side is Davy Jones preforming White Christmas. Davy's version of White Christmas was re-released in 1986 after Chip Douglas did some additional over dubs. While the picture sleeve says We Three Monkees, it was officially released as Davy Jones, Micky Dolenz and Peter Tork as they still couldn't call themselves the Monkees for legal reasons. With the release of this song it was the first Monkees single to be released since 1971. While the Monkees version is the most popular it was done before in the 1960's by a group called Christmas Spirit.
Here is a video that has what I believe is the song by the group Christmas Spirit.
Chip Douglas' has a smooth and easy to listen to production style that is timeless. This song would fit well on any of the Monkees albums he produced in the 60's or any that they have done since. While it had limited release in 1976 it has been on many Christmas compilation albums over the years.
Here is the song that was relased in 1976. Have a Merry Christmas everybody.