Celeb’s b’day : True diva

The worst frustration for a singer is choosing a career in making music and then not being able to make music because you’re always giving interviews


Latin pop sensation Shakira was born on February 2, 1977, in Barranquilla, Colombia to Lebanese father and Colombian mother. A child prodigy Shakira started writing songs at the age of eight. While her famous dancing skills were discovered at the age of seven when she showed her graceful moves while dancing with some belly dancers at a restaurant.

She got her first commercial break at the age of 14 when a local theatre producer — who was a friend — met Sony Music executive on a flight and arranged for an audition. She signed a three album deal with the company. Her first two albums — Magia (Magic) and Peligro (Danger) — were commercial disappointments selling less than 1,000 copies.

The turning point in her musical career came in 1996 when she released her third album titled Pies Descalzos (Bare feet) which went on to sell four million copies. She left the teen-pop style of her previous albums and opted for more of rock. Artistes like Nirvana, Aerosmith and Tom Petty inspired her to take this step.

With this album she also launched her trademark style which talks about her Latino and Arabic heritage. Blend of Latin, rock and Arabic music has been established as her trademark sound.

The next album that followed — Dónde Están Los Ladrones?( Where are the thieves?) — established her as a superstar in the Spanish speaking markets.

Already popular in Latin America Shakira had now set on eyes on US, she moved to Miami with her family. In order to reach out the English speaking fans not only did she hire Emilio Estefan (Gloria Estefan’s husband) as manager and producer she even taught herself to write songs in English.

Her first English album Laundry Service which released in 2001 hit the jackpot. The album reached to No 3 on US charts with two singles Wherever, Whenever and Underneath Your Clothes riding the Top 10.

Already a global superstar Shakira returned with bang in 2005 with two albums — Spanish-language Fijación Oral, Volume 1 in June and English-language Oral Fixation, Volume 2 in November. Both the albums went on to become chart toppers.

A student of history at UCLA Shakira has also been actively involved in creating a prosperous Latin America with her two charities — Pies Descalzos Foundation and ALAS (Latin America in Solidarity). While the first foundation helps underprivileged children in Colombia the later one works towards battling child poverty in Latin America.

Named as one of People en Espanol’s 100 Most Influential Hispanics Shakira is engaged to Antonio de la Rua, the son of former Argentine president Fernando de la Rua.


Grammy Awards

• 2006: Best Latin Rock/Alternative Album for Fijacion Oral Vol. 1

• 2001: Best Latin Pop Album for MTV Unplugged

Billboard Music Awards

• 2005: Latin Song of the Year for La Tortura shared with Alejandro Sanz

• Latin Pop Album of the Year for Fijacion Oral Vol 1

• Latin Pop Album Artist of the Year

American Music Awards

• 2006: Favourite Latin Artist

• 2005: Favourite Latin Artist

MTV Video Music Awards

• 2007: Most Earthshattering Collaboration - Beautiful Liar shared with Beyonce

Billboard Latin Music Awards

• 2007: Hot Latin Song of the Year, Vocal Duet for Hips Don’t Lie shared with Wyclef Jean

• 2006: Latin Pop Album of the Year, Female for Fijacion Oral Vol 1

Latin Grammy Awards

• 2006: Record of the Year for La Tortura

• Album of the Year for Fijación Oral Vol 1

• Song of the Year for La Tortura shared with Luis F Ochoa; Alejandro Sanz

• Best Female Pop Vocal

Album for Fijación Oral Vol 1

• 2002: Best Music Video for Suerte

MTV Europe Music Awards

• 2005: Best Female Act

MTV Video Music Awards Latin America

• 2006: Song of the Year for Hips Don’t Lie

• 2002: Best Female Artist

• Best Pop Artist

• Best Artist from the North Region

• Artist of the Year

• Video of the Year


• Became the youngest ever goodwill

ambassador for the

United Nations UNICEF on October 24, 2003

• Donated 10,000 pairs

of tennis shoes to her hometown of Barranquilla to impoverished children - the donation was made through the Barefoot Foundation, named after one of Shakira’s disks called Pies Descalzos in Spanish. (December 21, 2002)

• Shakira signs a deal

with toy company Mattel, maker of Barbie, to

license a collection

of fashion dolls and


(November 6, 2002)

• She’s a perfectionist who spends hours in the

studio; she needs to be close to nature but her passion is the crackle

of electric guitars.

• Hips Don’t Lie is the first song ever to reach the No1 spot in both mainstream and Latin Billboard charts

• Hips Don’t Lie hits the million downloads in the fastest time ever.

• Fijación Oral, Volume 1 debuted at No 4 on Billboard 200 in US making it the highest debut ever for a Spanish language album