Artist: Shakira Bio

10 Feb 2006, 17:07  70,063,326  2,376,793

Shakira

Little known outside her native Colombia, it wasn't until 1995 when Shakira took full creative control over her music, a fusion of rock and dance pop with both deeply personal and biting political lyrics. The approach yielded two multiplatinum albums. In 2001, she broke through into the English-speaking market with the release of her first album in that language, Laundry Service, which she wrote and produced herself and which has sold 3,5 million copies in the United States and 15 million (sometimes stated as 20 million) copies worldwide. The album's massive sales came in large part thanks to the worldwide hit, "Whenever, Wherever" a dance song with unique Andean instrumentation which soon became one of the highest selling singles of the 21st century.

Shakira is half Lebanese, one quarter Spanish, and one quarter Italian. She was born to a Colombian mother of Catalan and Italian descent, Nidia del Carmen Ripoll Torrado, and a Lebanese father, William Mebarak Chadid, in Barranquilla, Colombia, where she says she grew up among the Lebanese and Italian communities. Her father was born in Lebanon, and immediately after that, his family migrated to New York, but he soon migrated to Colombia. Shakira, which means "grateful" in Arabic (شاكرة), is named after her paternal grandmother. She was one of seven siblings, one of whom is her road manager. Shakira attended a Catholic school and in second grade was rejected for the school choir because her vibrato was too strong.[2] She began writing and composing music at the age of eight and later choreographed dance routines. At school, she says she had been known as "the belly dancer girl", as she would demonstrate a number she learned every Friday at school. "That's how I discovered my passion for live performance," she says.[3] One of the first songs she wrote was called "Tus Gafas Oscuras" (Your Dark Glasses), which was about her father's grief over a son who had died in a car accident.

Between the ages of ten and thirteen Shakira was invited to various events in Barranquilla and gained some recognition in the area. It was at about this time that she met local theater producer Monica Ariza, who was impressed with her and as a result tried to help her career. During a flight from Barranquilla to Bogotá, Ariza convinced Sony Colombia executive Ciro Vargas to hold an audition for Shakira in a motel lobby. Vargas held Shakira in high regard and, returning to the Sony office, gave the cassette to a song and artist director. However, the director was not overly excited and thought Shakira was something of "a lost cause". Vargas, not daunted, was still convinced that Shakira had talent, and set up an audition in Bogotá. He arranged for Sony Colombia executives to arrive at the audition, with the idea of surprising them with Shakira's performance. She performed three songs for the executives and impressed them enough for her to be signed to record three albums.

Magia (Magic) was Shakira's debut album, recorded with Sony Colombia in 1991, when she was 13. The album did not fare well commercially, selling less than one thousand copies. After Magia, Shakira released Peligro (Danger) in 1993. The album was better received than Magia, though it was considered a commercial failure, due to Shakira's refusal to advertise it.

Shakira then decided to take a hiatus from recording so that she could graduate from high school.

Shakira returned to recording in 1995, supported by a new confessional and Alanis Morissette-oriented persona that affected some of her next albums, and made her third studio one, Pies Descalzos (Bare Feet), bring her great fame in Latin America. The singles "Estoy Aquí" (I'm Here), "Pies Descalzos, Sueños Blancos" (Bare Feet, White Dreams), and "Dónde Estás Corazón?" (Where Are You, My Heart?) became pop culture icons. Pies Descalzos sold more than 4 million copies, which prompted the release of a remix album, titled simply The Remixes, which sold more than a million copies. The Remixes also included Portuguese versions of some of her best-known songs, which were recorded because of her success in the Brazilian market.

Her fourth album, ¿Dónde Están Los Ladrones? (Where Are The Thieves?), was released in 1998. It was produced by Emilio Estefan, reportedly cost US$3 million, and had more of a polished sound than Pies Descalzos. It was even more successful and solidified her as one of the major Latin artists of the 1990s. She began to gain more fans in non-Spanish-speaking countries like France, Switzerland, Canada, and especially the United States. Eight of the album's eleven tracks became singles, including "Ciega, Sordomuda"(Blind, Deaf, and Mute), "Moscas En La Casa" (Flies in the House), "No Creo" (I Don't Believe), "Inevitable", "Tú" (You), "Si Te Vas" (If You Leave), "Octavo Día" (Eighth Day), and the world-famous "Ojos Así"(Eyes Like Yours). Shakira's first live album, MTV Unplugged, was composed of "Estoy Aquí" and the songs from ¿Dónde Están Los Ladrones?.

In 2001, upon the success of ¿Dónde Están Los Ladrones?, Shakira began working on a crossover album to the English language. Collaborating with Gloria Estefan, Shakira wrote and recorded English versions of the tracks from ¿Dónde Están Los Ladrones?. However, Shakira later decided against using translations of older songs for the album and worked for over a year on new material for the album. The result was Laundry Service. Although it was created for the intent of selling to an English language market, the rock and Spanish dance-influenced album also featured four Spanish songs, including "Que Me Quedes Tú" (I Hope You Stay With Me). Some critics claimed that Shakira's English skills were too weak for her to write in it, but Laundry Service was a success, with more than 13 million sales worldwide, yielding the worldwide hit "Whenever, Wherever" and singles "Underneath Your Clothes" (a Canadian number-one), "Te Dejo Madrid" (I Leave You Madrid), "Objection (Tango)", and "The One". The album and its singles helped to establish Shakira's musical presence in the mainstream North American market.

Shakira stayed out of the spotlight for 2 and a half years, notably changing her hair style. She later announced Oral Fixation 1 and 2 due in 2005. Fijación Oral Vol. 1 was released on June 6, 2005 in Europe and on June 7, 2005 in North America and Australia. The lead single "La Tortura" (English: The Torture, featuring Alejandro Sanz) eventually reached number one in Spain and number twenty-three on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100. In Canada, "La Tortura" also became the highest-charting Spanish song when it debuted and peaked at number twenty-one. Its success across the rest of the world was widespread and it managed to peak within the top ten of the majority of the charts it entered. In the U.S., "La Tortura" spent a record twenty-five weeks at number one on the Billboard Hot Latin Tracks chart. The single in partnership with Alejandro Sanz became the best-selling Spanish single of all time according to Guiness World Records.

Fijación Oral Vol. 1 was simultaneously released in Latin America. It debuted at number one in Spain and at number four on the U.S. Billboard 200. It was also well-received in non-Spanish speaking countries such as Italy, Greece and Germany, where it reached number one, Austria, where it reached number three, and Canada and Hungary, where it reached number seven. The second single from Fijación Oral Vol. 1, "No" (English: No), was released in September 2005, and peaked at number one in Spain and Colombia, for fourteen non-consecutive weeks. So far, Fijación Oral Vol. 1 has sold five million copies worldwide. Her third single from "Fijación Oral vol. 1", Día de Enero, is dedicated to her fiance, Antonio de la Rúa. This single was number one in some countries in Latin America, but it hadn't got success like "La Tortura" and "No". She also performed "La Tortura" at the 2005 MTV Video Music Awards in Miami with Alejandro Sanz. It was the first ever Spanish performance at the VMA's.

Shakira's second English album Oral Fixation Vol. 2 was released on November 29, 2005 in North America and Australia, and also at this time in Continental Europe. While "Don't Bother" was warmly received by music critics as the album's lead single, it failed to peak within the U.S. top 40. The second single "Hips Don't Lie" (featuring Wyclef Jean) became her first single to reach number one on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 and UK Singles Chart. On March 28, 2006, she re-released Oral Fixation Vol. 2 in the U.S. and released it June 19, 2006. Shakira also had the collaboration of Argentinian Rock en Español legend Gustavo Cerati on 2 tracks of both Oral Fixation albums. "Hips Don't Lie" is now considered Shakira's most successful song, since it topped the charts in more than 55 countries and turned into the highest-selling single of the 21st century in accordance to Harvard University.

In 2000, Shakira started dating Antonio de la Rúa, the son of then president of Argentina Fernando de la Rúa, a romance that made headline news throughout Latin America. In March of 2001, he proposed to her. During Fernando De la Rúa's presidency, the economy of Argentina collapsed, leading to the subsequently violent December 2001 riots; in response to the turmoil, Tower Records decided to no longer sell Shakira's albums [6] in Argentina as Antonio was directly involved in the management of his father's administration. De la Rúa and Shakira split in 2010. Shakira met Barcelona defender Gérard Pique at a video filming in 2010, eventually becoming a couple in 2011. They have two children together.

Shakira is well-known for her dancing in various music videos. The moves are based on the art of belly dancing, a part of her Lebanese heritage, which Shakira says she learned as a young teen to overcome her shyness. The intense training has afforded her a fluidity in her body movement most seen in the video to her hit "La Tortura". In an MTV interview, she said people told her she never moved her chest when dancing, so she danced with her chest (as well as her usual belly dancing moves) in the videos for "La Tortura" and "Hips Don't Lie".

She has had several belly dance choreographers, including award-winning Bellydance Superstar Bozenka. As her MTV 'The Making of...' special shows, she worked with Jamie King for the choreography, but ended up creating most of it herself


Top Track "Shakira"

Hips Don't Lie - Shakira

Hips Don't Lie

585,888
3,334,809
She Wolf - Shakira

She Wolf

476,276
3,270,962
Whenever, Wherever - Shakira

Whenever, Wherever

447,629
2,270,432
Underneath Your Clothes - Shakira

Underneath Your Clothes

316,942
1,678,545
La Tortura - Shakira

La Tortura

288,979
2,001,645
Can't Remember to Forget You - Shakira

Can't Remember to Forget You

211,816
1,236,827
Objection (Tango) - Shakira

Objection (Tango)

192,715
924,776
Don't Bother - Shakira

Don't Bother

168,455
1,088,217
Gypsy - Shakira

Gypsy

168,445
1,151,740
Did It Again - Shakira

Did It Again

165,585
1,406,192
Rabiosa - Shakira

Rabiosa

143,220
1,395,287
Loba - Shakira

Loba

130,025
947,949
Inevitable - Shakira

Inevitable

125,668
825,378
Las de la Intuición - Shakira

Las de la Intuición

118,491
974,475
Addicted to You - Shakira

Addicted to You

110,925
920,371
Chantaje - Shakira

Chantaje

108,127
874,156
Si te vas - Shakira

Si te vas

106,191
654,492
The One - Shakira

The One

106,166
513,167
Loca - Shakira

Loca

104,391
869,713
Ciega, Sordomuda - Shakira

Ciega, Sordomuda

96,557
615,462
Te Dejo Madrid - Shakira

Te Dejo Madrid

95,378
513,962
Empire - Shakira

Empire

85,306
735,478
Dare (La La La) - Shakira

Dare (La La La)

84,857
601,183
Día de Enero - Shakira

Día de Enero

83,667
511,032
Moscas en la casa - Shakira

Moscas en la casa

81,917
446,617
Poem to a Horse - Shakira

Poem to a Horse

79,886
404,664
Why Wait - Shakira

Why Wait

79,140
481,258
Ojos Asi - Shakira

Ojos Asi

78,936
357,486
La Pared - Shakira

La Pared

77,328
489,568
Long Time - Shakira

Long Time

76,759
395,340
Fool - Shakira

Fool

76,255
345,377
Que Me Quedes Tu - Shakira

Que Me Quedes Tu

75,934
295,833
Men in This Town - Shakira

Men in This Town

75,786
588,529
Rules - Shakira

Rules

74,911
303,832
Ojos así - Shakira

Ojos así

74,243
475,427
Ready for the Good Times - Shakira

Ready for the Good Times

73,413
343,358
Sale el Sol - Shakira

Sale el Sol

73,338
647,164
Good Stuff - Shakira

Good Stuff

72,657
451,500
No creo - Shakira

No creo

68,481
364,845
Animal City - Shakira

Animal City

67,922
352,101
Estoy aquí - Shakira

Estoy aquí

65,012
340,900
Me EnaMOrÉ - Shakira

Me EnaMOrÉ

64,848
506,865
Mon Amour - Shakira

Mon Amour

64,585
430,443
Antes de las Seis - Shakira

Antes de las Seis

63,975
548,268
Illegal - Shakira

Illegal

63,842
358,655
En Tus Pupilas - Shakira

En Tus Pupilas

63,010
352,920