Wednesday, November 10, 1999

About Shakira

Shakira Isabel Mebarak Ripoll (born February 2, 1977), known
professionally as Shakira (pronounced /??'k??r?/, Spanish: [t?a'ki?a]
or [?a'ki?a], Portuguese: [?a'ki??]; Arabic: ??????), is a
Colombian[4] singer-songwriter, musician, record producer, dancer and
philanthropist who emerged as a musical prodigy in the music scene of
Latin America in the early 1990s. Born and raised in Barranquilla,
Colombia, Shakira revealed many of her talents in school as a live
performer, demonstrating her vocal ability with rock and roll, Latin
and Middle Eastern influences with her own original twist on belly
dancing. Shakira is a native Spanish speaker and also speaks fluent
English, Portuguese and Italian.. She also sings in Classical Arabic.

After commercial flops with local producers on her first two albums,
and little-known outside Colombia, Shakira decided to produce her own
brand of music. In 1995 she released Pies Descalzos, which brought her
great fame in Latin America and Spain, and her 1998 album ¿Dónde Están
los Ladrones? was a critical success. Since then she has gained many
fans in semi-Hispanophone countries, especially the United States, and
many non-Spanish-speaking countries. In 2001, and aided by heavy
promotion of the music video, "Whenever, Wherever", she broke through
into the English-speaking world with the release of Laundry Service,
which sold over thirteen million copies worldwide. Four years
later, Shakira released two album projects called Fijación Oral Vol. 1
and Oral Fixation Vol. 2. Both reinforced her success, particularly with
the most successful song in the 21st century to date, "Hips Don't Lie".
On 12 October 2009 Shakira released her latest album She Wolf.

She has won two Grammy Awards, seven Latin Grammy Awards, and has been
Golden Globe-nominated. She is also the highest-selling Colombian
artist of all time, and the second most successful female Latin singer
having sold over 50 million albums worldwide, according to BMI.
Additionally, she is the only artist from South America to reach the
number-one spot on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100, Canadian Hot 100, the
Australian ARIA chart, and the UK Singles Chart.

Shakira is to be awarded with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.