Shakira's portrait ahead of 'Las Mujeres Ya No Lloran' album release
Latin Pop, Reggaeton



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Last updated on
February 18, 2024

Shakira Isabel Mebarak Ripoll, mononymously known as Shakira, stands as a towering figure in the realm of global music. Born on February 2, 1977, in Barranquilla, Colombia, she has been celebrated as the "Queen of Latin Music" and lauded for her musical versatility.

Early Life and Upbringing

Shakira's unique blend of Lebanese and Colombian heritage has played a pivotal role in shaping her musical style. The only child of William Mebarak Chadid and Nidia Ripoll Torrado, she was exposed to a rich cultural tapestry from an early age. Her father's Lebanese background and her mother's Colombian roots provided her with a diverse musical palette. Shakira penned her first poem at the tender age of four and was deeply influenced by her father's storytelling. Her passion for music and performance was ignited early, leading her to write her first song at eight, inspired by the tragic death of her older half-brother.

Career Beginnings

Shakira's professional music career began at 13 when she signed with Sony Music Colombia. Her first two albums, "Magia" (1991) and "Peligro" (1993), saw limited success. However, her perseverance paid off with "Pies Descalzos" (1995) and "Dónde Están los Ladrones?" (1998), which catapulted her to fame in Hispanic countries.

International Success

The turn of the millennium marked Shakira's crossover into the English-speaking market with "Laundry Service" (2001). The album, featuring hits like "Whenever, Wherever" and "Underneath Your Clothes," sold over 13 million copies worldwide. This success established her as a leading crossover artist and paved the way for subsequent English and Spanish albums, including "Fijación Oral, Vol. 1" (2005), "Sale el Sol" (2010), and "El Dorado" (2017), all of which solidified her status as a global music icon.

Artistic Style and Musical Evolution

Shakira's music is a fusion of Latin, rock, and Middle Eastern influences, reflecting her multicultural background. Her ability to blend different genres, coupled with her distinctive voice and belly dancing, has made her a unique presence in the music industry. Over the years, her sound has evolved, yet she has remained true to her roots, continuously exploring and integrating diverse musical elements.

Personal Life

Shakira's personal life, including her relationships with Antonio de la Rúa and Gerard Piqué, and her role as a mother of two, has been well-documented. Beyond her music, she is renowned for her philanthropy, notably through the Barefoot Foundation, which focuses on education for impoverished children.

Awards and Achievements

Shakira's illustrious career has been adorned with numerous awards, including three Grammy Awards, fourteen Latin Grammy Awards, and a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. She has been recognized as the best-selling female Latin artist of all time, with over 95 million records sold worldwide.


Shakira's discography is extensive, with albums that have left an indelible mark on the music industry. From "Pies Descalzos" to "El Dorado," her work spans over two decades of musical innovation and success. Her singles, such as "Hips Don't Lie," "Waka Waka (This Time for Africa)," and "Chantaje," have topped charts worldwide, showcasing her global appeal.

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Shakira in a gold dress against silver backdrop
Shakira Honored with a Bronze Statue in Her Hometown Barranquilla

Shakira has been immortalized in bronze in her hometown of Barranquilla, Colombia, with a statue that celebrates her legacy.

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