Shakira Isabel Mebarak Ripoll (pronounced: [ born February 2, 1977) is a Colombian singer, songwriter, dancer, record producer, choreographer, and model. Born and raised in Barranquilla, she began performing in school, demonstrating Latin American, Arabic, and rock and roll influences and belly dancing abilities. Shakira released her first studio albums, Magia and Peligro, in the early 1990s, failing to attain commercial success; however, she rose to prominence in Latin America with her major-label debut, Pies Descalzos (1996), and her fourth album, Dónde Están los Ladrones? (1998).Shakira entered the English-language market with her fifth album, Laundry Service. Its lead single, “Whenever, Wherever”, became the best-selling single of 2002. Her success was solidified with her sixth and seventh albums Fijación Oral, Vol. 1 and Oral Fixation, Vol. 2 (2005), the latter of which spawned the best-selling song of the 21st century, “Hips Don’t Lie”. Shakira’s eighth and ninth albums, She Wolf (2009) and Sale el Sol (2010), received critical praise but suffered from limited promotion due to her strained relationship with label Epic Records. Her official song for the 2010 FIFA World Cup, “Waka Waka (This Time for Africa)”, became the biggest-selling World Cup song of all time. With over a billion views, it’s one of the most-watched music videos on YouTube. Since 2013, Shakira has served as a coach on the American version of The Voice, having appeared in two of its seven seasons—fourth and sixth. Her tenth album, Shakira (2014), is preceded by its lead single, “Can’t Remember to Forget You”.Shakira has won many awards, including five MTV Video Music Awards, two Grammy Awards, eight Latin Grammy Awards, seven Billboard Music Awards, 28 Billboard Latin Music Awards and has been Golden Globe-nominated. She has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and sold between 70 and 125 million records worldwide (depending on the source), making her one of the best selling Latin artists of all time. She carries out well-known philanthropic activities through charity work most notably through her Pies Descalzos Foundation. In 2014, she was listed as the 58th most powerful woman in the world by Forbes.In July 2014, Shakira became the first person to reach 100 million followers on Facebook.
Shakira’s debut album, Magia, was recorded with Sony Music Colombia in 1990 when she was only 13 years old.The songs are a collection made by her since she was eight, mixed pop-rock ballads and disco uptempo songs with electronic accompaniment, however it was hampered by a lack of recording and production cohesion. The album was released in June 1991 and featured “Magia” and three other singles. Though it fared well on Colombian radio and gave the young Shakira much exposure, the album did not fare well commercially as only 1,200 copies were sold worldwide. After the poor performance of Magia, Shakira’s label urged her to return to the studio to release a follow-up record. Although little known outside of her native Colombia, Shakira was invited to perform at Chile’s Viña del Mar International Song Festival in February 1993. The festival gave aspiring Latin American singers a chance to perform their songs, and the winner was then chosen by a panel of judges. Shakira performed the ballad “Eres” (“You Are”) and won the trophy for third place. One of the judges who voted for her to win was then 20-year-old Ricky Martin.
Shakira’s second studio album Peligro was released in March, but Shakira was not pleased with the final result, mainly taking issue with the production. The album was better received than Magia, though it was also 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. In the same year, Shakira starred in the Colombian TV series The Oasis, loosely based on the Armero tragedy in 1985. Since then, the albums have been pulled from release and are not considered official Shakira albums but rather promotional albums. Shakira originally recorded the song “¿Dónde Estás Corazón?” (later released on her album Pies Descalzos) for the compilation album Nuestro Rock in 1995, released exclusively in Colombia.The album Pies Descalzos brought her great popularity in Latin America by the hit singles “Estoy Aquí,” “Pies Descalzos, Sueños Blancos” and “Dónde Estás Corazón.”Shakira also recorded three tracks in Portuguese titled “Estou Aqui”, “Um Pouco de Amor”, and “Pés Descalços”.
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