Sunday, January 30, 2011

Shakira - Latin America's Goddess

When this tiny, sympathetic, happy girl came into the music scene in the early 90s, it was evident she was destined for stardom.  Born in Barranquilla, Colombia on February 2nd 1977 (Happy Early Birthday!!!) as Shakira Isabel Mebarak Ripoll, she probably never imagined in her wildest dreams the impact she would have in music for years to come.

I remember like it was yesterday, my 13 year old self was walking around with my walkman singing Y Estoy Aqui” (It was with this song that Shakira became internationally known) and Antologia off her debut album Pies Descalzos.  By 15, I was signing “Ciega, Sordomuda” at the top of my lungs.  There were many other hits in this album Donde Estan Los Ladrones including Moscas en la Casa, Inevitable, and Ojos Asi.  Her sound was fresh, it was cool, it was exactly great for everyone of any age.

She became an international sensation with the release of her crossover album, Laundry Service.  What girl on this planet was not signing “Whenever, Wherever”?  How many did not sign up for belly dancing classes after seeing her video?  She brought back the sensual art of belly dancing into the new millennium and made it her own.  How many artists claim the same?

Let us not forget her most amazing collaborations throughout the years:  “La Tortura” with the amazing Spaniard Alejandro Sanz and “Hips Don’t Lie” with Wyclef Jean from the Black Eye Peas. 

Her new album Sale El Sol debuted at #7 on the Billboard 200.  It is not Shakira’s forth top ten album and her third highest album debut following the debut of Fijacion Oral Vol. 1 which debuted at #4 and held the highest debut for a Latin Album in the year 2010.  The song “Waka Waka (This Time for Africa)” [Waka Waka (Esto Es Africa)] became the official song for the 2010 FIFA World Cup.  It is this album that gained Shakira 3 nominations on the upcoming Premio Lo Nuestro Awards:

Premios Lo Nuestro 2011 Nominations
·        Artist of the Year
·        Best Female Artist
·        Pop Song of the Year – “Lo Hecho Esta Hecho”

Since the start of her career, Shakira has always been a philanthropist.  In 1995 she founded the Pies Descalzos Foundation in Colombia with special schools for poor children.  She has participated in many charitable performance concerts such as VH1’s Save the Music Foundation, Live 8 Benefit Concert in Paris and she is an active member of Fundacion ALAS (much like our beloved Chayanne).  She is also a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador and in 2006 was honored at a United Nations Ceremony for her creation and work with Pies Descalzos Foundation.  In 2010, she was awarded a medal by the United Nations’ International Labor Organization, again for her work with children and young people in need.

1996   Pies Descalzos
1998   Donde Estan Los Ladrones
2001   Laundry Service
2005   Fijacion Oral Vol. 1
2005  Oral Fixation Vol. 2
2009  She Wolf
2010  Sale El Sol

Don’t forget to tune in February 17th on Univision to see the Awards.


Pandora said...

Great Job!! I love it!! I also love Shakira with dark hair!

Candela said...

I agree...she looks amazing with dark hair! Great job Bari....article is awesome!!!

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