march to (the beat of) a different drummer

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march to (the beat of) a different drummer

To behave or do things in a manner that does not conform to the standard, prevalent, or popular societal norm. My brother eschewed the idea of a full-time career, taking all kinds of different oddball jobs. But then he's always been happy marching to the beat of a different drummer. Look, I respect the fact that you like to march to a different drummer, but do you have to do everything in such contrarian ways?
See also: beat, different, drummer, march, to
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2022 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

march to (the beat of) a different drummer

Fig. to believe in a different set of principles. John is marching to a different drummer, and he doesn't associate with us anymore. Since Sally started marching to the beat of a different drummer, she has had a lot of great new ideas.
See also: different, drummer, march, to
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

march to (the beat of) a different ˈdrummer/ˈdrum

(also march to a different ˈtune less frequent) behave in a different way from other people; have different attitudes or ideas: She was a gifted and original artist who marched to a different drummer.
See also: different, drum, drummer, march, to
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

march to (the beat of) a different drummer, to

To follow principles quite different from those of most others. This term, which became current in the mid-twentieth century, actually has its source in the last chapter of Thoreau’s Walden (1854): “If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer.” Thoreau, champion of individualism, was hailed by the antiestablishmentarians of the 1960s in particular, who picked up a version of his phrase. Quoting a business executive, Connie Bruck wrote in a 1990 New Yorker article, “We saw ourselves . . . as the tough guys, very smart, who were marching to our own drummer.”
See also: beat, different, march, to
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer
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