Willie Nelson was always too complex an artist to be pigeonholed by a tag like country singer, or even country songwriter. His style incorporates elements of jazz, folk, blues, R&B and rock & roll as well. Nowhere was his musical versatility more apparent than on the series of albums he recorded that featured his versions of pop standards. The most aesthetically and commerically successful of these is undoubtedly STARDUST, but WHAT A WONDERFUL WORLD also makes a convicing case for Nelson as pop balladeer.
Nelson's craggy, emotive voice is the kind of instrument many cabaret singer would kill for. It's expressiveness enables him to breathe life into whatever he sings, an ability that served him in good stead throughout every phase of his career. Here, tackling standards like "Spanish Eyes" (a duet with Julio Iglesias), "To Each His Own" and the Johnny Mercer classic "Ac-cen-tchu-ate the Positive," he sounds perfectly at ease, delivering the lyrics with comfort and authority.