On this Latin soul hit, Stevie Wonder encourages his lady to be fearless in exploring all life has to offer because he'll always be by her side. Although he claims to speak fluent Spanish in the intro, saying "Todo está bien chévere" ("Everything's really great" or "Everything's cool"), Wonder didn't really know the language.
He told NPR: "I've always been a lover of music. And the thing with 'Don't You Worry 'Bout A Thing,' when I did the demo, I was just saying some things. You know, I didn't speak Spanish. But that's, I think, part of the whole excitement of me being raised in the Midwest. You had radio stations that you have maybe a couple hours of Spanish music. You have some Italian music. You have some gospel music. You have some jazz. You have all these various varieties of music. Now, you hear some Arabic stations. You hear all of the various accents. And so like, I never imagined that I would be going to these places, but I'll praise to God I was able to - being able to travel to so many places. And so that was me mocking sort of the sound of it."
The Spanish lyric was inspired by a Puerto Rican woman that Wonder met in a record store. He recalled: "I remember the night I was going to do this song. And I just so happened to meet this girl named Rain. And she was beautiful. And she worked at this record shop - this record store. And I'm like saying to her, hey, you know, it's amazing. You know, she sings. You know, she's Puerto Rican. I say, yeah, OK, well, you know, I'm doing a little thing and like a little something called 'Don't You Worry 'Bout A Thing.' What can I - I mean, give me something, something. I'll let you come to the studio if you have anything to say. I'll say some things, and it will be a wonderful day. And she said, 'todo esta bien chevere.' And that's how I got that in a song. And, you know, we fell in love, and it was a beautiful thing."
This was a #2 hit on the R&B chart.
The British acid jazz band Incognito had a #19 hit in the UK when they covered this in 1992. Several other artists have also covered it, including The Main Ingredient, saxophonist Hank Crawford, Weldon Irvine, Al Jarreau, and John Legend. Tori Kelly also recorded it in 2016 for the animated movie Sing.
The night before Donald Trump was elected US President in 2016, Wonder appeared on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert and expressed his disdain for Trump. Colbert asked the singer to perform this tune to allay the fears of liberal voters.
John Legend's rendition was featured in the 2005 comedy Hitch, starring Will Smith, while Wonder's original was used in the films Holy Man (1998), Bringing Out The Dead (1999), Welcome Home Roscoe Jenkins (2008), and Silver Linings Playbook (2012); it was also used on the TV series Scandal in the 2016 episode "Thwack!"