Don't You Worry 'bout a Thing

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"Don't You Worry 'bout a Thing"
Single by Stevie Wonder
from the album Innervisions
ReleasedMarch 5, 1974 (1974-03-05)
Length4:44 (album version)
3:40 (single version)
Songwriter(s)Stevie Wonder
Producer(s)Stevie Wonder
Stevie Wonder singles chronology
"Living for the City"
"Don't You Worry 'bout a Thing"
"He's Misstra Know-It-All"
Official audio
"Don't You Worry 'bout a Thing" on YouTube

"Don't You Worry 'bout a Thing" is a song by American singer-songwriter Stevie Wonder, released as the third single from his sixteenth studio album, Innervisions (1973). It reached number 16 on the US Billboard Pop Singles chart, number 10 on the Cash Box Top 100,[2] and number two on the R&B chart. The song's lyrics convey a positive message, focusing on taking things in one's stride and accentuating the positive. In 1992, British band Incognito had a European hit with their cover of the song.

Music and lyrics[edit]

The tune is in E minor, starting with a Latin piano intro. The opening melody is reminiscent of Horace Silver's "Song for My Father",[3] over which Stevie engages in an English-speaking dialogue with a woman, trying to impress her with talk of worldliness of having been to "Iraq, Iran, Eurasia" before changing to somewhat unintelligible Spanish, using the phrase "Todo 'stá bien chévere", which loosely translates as "Everything's really great," continuing with an attempt to impress the woman.


Describing the song for the "Stevie Wonder: 20 Essential Songs" feature in The Daily Telegraph, Chris Harvey said:

With its playful Latin-piano-and-street-jive intro ... and its uplifting, upward-spiralling chorus, Don't You Worry 'bout a Thing easily takes its place among the works of pure joy that the musical prodigy has effortlessly poured out throughout his career. Showcased on the 1973 Innervisions album that came from the period in which Wonder ... was experimenting with synthesized sounds with producer Robert Margouleff, it's a back-to-basics song (although it does feature a Moog bass, played by Wonder) that relies on the interplay of piano, percussion and that ecstatic voice. It sounds and feels like a burst of summer happiness.[4]

Billboard said that the song is a "strong ballad with gentle arrangements".[5] Cash Box called it an "interesting Latin flavored disk," going on to say that "the vocals are soft and perfectly accented by some fine piano by Stevie and great backing percussion."[6] Record World said that "quasi-Spanish banter introduces a Latin-lilting [song]" in which "he feeling [Wonder] produced on 'You Are The Sunshine of My Life' goes uptempo and uptown."[7]


Incognito version[edit]

"Don't You Worry 'bout a Thing"
Single by Incognito
from the album Tribes, Vibes and Scribes
ReleasedMay 25, 1992 (1992-05-25)[13]
LabelTalkin' Loud
Songwriter(s)Stevie Wonder
  • J.P. 'Bluey' Maunick
  • Richard Bull
Incognito singles chronology
"Always There"
"Don't You Worry 'bout a Thing"
Music video
"Don't You Worry 'bout a Thing" on YouTube

In 1992, British acid jazz band Incognito covered "Don't You Worry 'bout a Thing" on their third album, Tribes, Vibes and Scribes (1992). It features vocals by American jazz singer Maysa Leak and was a hit in Europe. The single was successful especially in the Netherlands, where it peaked at number six. Additionally, it was a top 20 hit in the United Kingdom, a top 30 hit in Belgium and a top 40 hit in Sweden. A music video was produced to promote the single. It features the band performing the song in a blue Triumph Herald 13/60 Convertible, while driving in the streets of London. Other scenes show them in a multistorey car park. A re-issue of the single was released in 2005.

Critical reception[edit]

Paula Edelstein from AllMusic described the song as a "killer cover".[14] Another editor, David Jeffries, called it an "effervescent cover".[15] Andy Beevers from Music Week viewed it as "Latin-tinged commercial jazz funk".[16] Sam Wood from The Philadelphia Inquirer deemed it a "killer version" that "springs off this disc with flourishes of bright, brassy Miami Horns, a suncopated house-styled piano figure, and Maysa Leak's stunning voice."[17] James Hamilton from the RM Dance Update, stated that Stevie Wonder's "brassily strutting 1974 US hit is here wailed by new girl Maysa".[18]

Track listing[edit]

  • 12" single, UK (1992)
  1. "Don't You Worry 'bout a Thing" (LP Version) – 5:17
  2. "Colibri" (Remix) – 5:39
  3. "Don't You Worry 'bout a Thing" (Frankie Foncett Mix) – 6:38
  4. "Don't You Worry 'bout a Thing" (Frankie Foncett Underground Instrumental Mix) – 5:35
  • CD single, Europe (1992)
  1. "Don't You Worry 'bout a Thing" (Edit) – 4:09
  2. "Don't You Worry 'bout a Thing" (LP Version) – 5:18
  3. "Colibri" (Remix) – 5:40
  4. "Don't You Worry 'bout a Thing" (Frankie Foncett Mix) – 6:40



  1. ^ Considine, J.D. (2004). "Stevie Wonder". In Brackett, Nathan; Hoard, Christian (eds.). The New Rolling Stone Album Guide (4th ed.). Simon & Schuster. pp. 885–886. ISBN 0-7432-0169-8.
  2. ^ a b "Top 100 1974-06-01". Cashbox Magazine. Retrieved February 5, 2015.
  3. ^ "Segment 24 | Bill Fitzhugh". Retrieved May 30, 2018.
  4. ^ "Stevie Wonder: 20 essential songs".
  5. ^ "Top Single Picks" (PDF). Billboard. March 23, 1974. p. 62. Retrieved July 22, 2020.
  6. ^ "CashBox Record Reviews" (PDF). Cash Box. March 30, 1974. p. 24. Retrieved December 11, 2021.
  7. ^ "Hits of the Week" (PDF). Record World. March 30, 1974. p. 1. Retrieved March 17, 2023.
  8. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2013). Joel Whitburn's Top Pop Singles, 14th Edition: 1955–2012. Record Research. p. 925.
  9. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2002). Top Adult Contemporary: 1961–2001. Record Research. p. 263.
  10. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2004). Top R&B/Hip-Hop Singles: 1942–2004. Record Research. p. 635.
  11. ^ Canada, Library and Archives (July 17, 2013). "Image : RPM Weekly".
  12. ^ "Top 100 Hits of 1974/Top 100 Songs of 1974". Retrieved October 9, 2016.
  13. ^ "New Releases: Singles". Music Week. May 23, 1992. p. 19.
  14. ^ Edelstein, Paula. "Incognito – Best of Incognito". AllMusic. Retrieved November 10, 2020.
  15. ^ Jeffries, David. "Incognito – Millennium Collection: 20th Century Masters". AllMusic. Retrieved November 10, 2020.
  16. ^ Beevers, Andy (May 23, 1992). "Dance" (PDF). Music Week. p. 8. Retrieved October 2, 2020.
  17. ^ Wood, Sam (February 2, 1993). "Incognito – Tribes Vibes + Scribes". p. E5. The Philadelphia Inquirer.
  18. ^ Hamilton, James (May 30, 1992). "DJ Directory: Out On Monday" (PDF). Music Week, in Record Mirror (Dance Update Supplemental Insert). p. 8. Retrieved October 2, 2020.
  19. ^ a b "INCOGNITO – DON'T YOU WORRY 'BOUT A THING (SONG)". Retrieved September 30, 2020.
  20. ^ "Eurochart Hot 100" (PDF). Music & Media. August 1, 1992. p. 33. Retrieved September 30, 2020.
  21. ^ "EDR Top 25" (PDF). Music & Media. July 18, 1992. p. 16. Retrieved September 30, 2020.
  22. ^ "Top 60 Dance Singles" (PDF). Music Week. June 6, 1992. p. 18. Retrieved September 30, 2020.