“When I was seven years old, I came to Los Angeles for the first time and I remember I was walking along the Walk of Fame and I remember that my mother told me: ‘Shaki, one day you’re going to have your name embedded here.’ I think if someone had heard my mom saying that they would’ve thought she was hallucinating,” the 34-year-old singer-songwriter
Shakira, who on Tuesday became the first Colombian to receive the five-pointed terrazzo and brass star on the Walk of Fame and the 2,454th celebrity recognized overall, dedicated the honor to all of her fans and supporters and the Hispanic community in the United States in particular.
“I want to share this with you because of that unbreakable spirit that we Latinos have, that spirit to overcome all our difficulties with a smile. This star is for you. I think we all come into the world with a star, with a talent and a gift and then our dreams are born,” she said.
The singer, who got her start in music at the age of 13, gained international stardom in 1996 with the release of her “Pies Descalzos” album. Her fame then continued to grow with the success of the 1998 album “¿Donde estan los ladrones?” and her English-language debut, “Laundry Service,” in 2001.
Her best-known hit singles include “Waka Waka (This Time for Africa), the official song for the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa; “Hips Don’t Lie,” with Haitian rapper Wyclef Jean; and “La Tortura,” a duet with Spanish pop star Alejandro Sanz.
Date of Birth
2 February 1977, Barranquilla, Colombia
Shakira Isabel Mebarak Ripoll
5' 2" (1.57 m)
Grammy-winning Latina pop singer Shakira was born in Barranquilla, Colombia, on February 2, 1977. Her father is a Lebanese-American immigrant and her mother a native of Colombia of Italian and Spanish decent. Shakira began her musical career at age 12 and quickly captured fans throughout Latin America. She won the 2001 Best Latin pop Grammy for her "MTV Unplugged" album.
Performs barefoot in most of her concerts.
Announced engagement to Antonio de la Rua, son of the then president of Argentina. [March 2001]
Is the youngest of eight siblings.
Shakira is Arabic for "grateful" or "full of grace."
Named her album "Laundry Service" because when she is in love she feels "clean and fresh"
Fluent in Portuguese, Italian, and English, in addition to Spanish.
Hates to wear jewelry.
Her Lebanese grandmother taught her the art of Arabian Belly Dancing so she can stay true to her middle eastern roots
Has perfect pitch (the ability to recognize any note upon hearing it or sing any note without prior to hearing it)
Her manager for Latin America, Patricia Tellez, the woman who helped her go from being local artist to Grammy-winning global artist, died of a heart attack in Bogota on 17 August 2004.
Ranked #9 in Stuff magazine's "102 Sexiest Women in the World" (2002).
She likes chocolate.
Father's name is William Mebarak Chadid and mother's name is Nidia del Carmen Ripolli Torrado.
Her mother is Colombian half Catalan Spanish and half Italian and her father is American of Lebanese ancestry.
Steven Spielberg offered her the role of Elena Montero in The Mask of Zorro (1998) back when he was originally in talks to direct it. But, she turned the offer down because she felt that not only was she a bad actress, but her English wasn't good enough.
When she was two years old her oldest half-brother died in an accident while he was riding a motorcycle and a drunk man hit him with his car.
Her oldest half-sister Lucy is a surgeon, Alberto, her half-brother, is a lawyer, Moises is the third child, Tonino is the fourth child and the closest to Shakira, having worked many years as her road manager. Then is Patricia who lives in Spain, she is a special education teacher, and finally there is Antonio and Edward, the youngest who lives in Miami.
The first English song she wrote was Objection, from the album Laundry Service.
She loves to eat corozos, a little Colombian fruit that is sweet-sour.
Lost her suitcase with all her songs from Donde Estan Los Ladrones in an airport in Bogota Colombia. This happened a couple of months before she walked into the recording studio to begin on that album.
Mattel put out several Barbie dolls inspired by Shakira and her look.
Her album 'Fijacion Oral Vol.1' is #1 on the Billboard Latin Albums Chart in September 2005.
Attended La Ensenanza School in Barranquilla.
Her English language album 'Oral Fixation 2' will be released in November 2005.
Lists John Lennon as her #1 musical influence.
Her cousin is fashion designer and Miss Colombia 2006, 'Valerie Dominguez' Tarud.
Ranked as #76 in FHM's "100 Sexiest Women in the World 2005" special supplement. (2005)
Was featured as #15 in Maxim Magazine's "Hot 100 of 2002" supplement. (2002)
Has homes in the Bahamas, Miami, Barranquilla-Colombia and Uruguay.
She was attached to play "Mimi" in a television mini-series based on the Broadway musical "Rent", with Neil Patrick Harris as "Mark Cohen", Wilson Cruz as "Angel", and Rikki Lee Travolta as "Roger Davis", but the rights were pulled in order for Chris Columbus to make a film adaptation using much of the original Broadway cast.
Her recording of "La Tortura" was a #1 hit in many countries, most of them in Europe.
"Hips Don't Lie" instantly soared to the top of the charts in many countries and has been at the very top for many months. It has won countless awards and is currently being performed all over the world along with Wyclef Jean.
Named #20 in FHM magazine's "100 Sexiest Women in the World 2006" supplement. (2006).
Is a huge fan of Bollywood movies and music from India. She got in touch with Farah Khan, the most famous choreographer in India, and asked her if she could choreograph a dance for her performance at the 2006 MTV Video Awards. That night, her performance was the most memorable one as she sang and danced to 'Hips Don't Lie' in traditional Indian clothing.
Best concert she ever saw - Depeche Mode.
While promoting Pies Descalzos, she returned to Barranquilla in 1997 for a huge homecoming concert, the first one since becoming a star. Tragedy struck that night when the venue failed to control the 50,000 fans rushing in to see their star. Two people ended up being trampled to death, and this deeply affected her.
Ranked #38 on the Maxim magazine Hot 100 of 2007 list.
Ranked #33 on VH1's 100 Sexiest Artists.
Her first tape was Donna Summers' Bad girls.
Natural haircolour is black.
Favourite flowers are sunflower and daisy.
Sport - likes to play tennis and swimming.
Has three dogs - Coquito, Chan and Gordita.
In 2007, Forbes Magazine reported that her 2006 earnings were estimated at $38 million.
The worst mistake of a woman is to go to the kitchen, because then she never gets out of there.
"I admire a person who, for the love of art, is able to take off their clothes in front of a camera. But I'm not capable, I'm too cowardly for that".
"It's not easy to work with me, I recognize that. It's not easy if those people aren't as perfectionistic as I am".
"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".
"My brain, I believe, is the most beautiful part of my body".
Videos come definitely after the music has been created, but I have always felt, and especially today, that videos are vital in the album process. I think that we live in a very visual era and if you make a mistake with a video, those images will accompany the song forever. There is no way to divorce the image from the music once the video has been filmed and exposed.
I remember the first time I saw the "Smells Like Teen Spirit" video. I will never forget that day. I just wanted to see Kurt Cobain's face. I had a feeling he was very cute. But, I couldn't see his face. When I finally did see him, he was even cuter than I imagined!
People think I like to expose my body. But I don't. It's just because the dance moves require it.
You can laugh, but since I was a child I knew that I was going to be a well- known singer/songwriter; that was something I had no doubts about. It was almost like a prophecy.
I love reading about history. Sometimes, I feel I was born in the wrong era. There was more creativity in the air when people were still discovering new worlds.
Writing in English was a major challenge. I didn't want other songwriters to write for me. I wanted to preserve the spirit of my songs in Spanish. I am the same Shakira in English as I am in Spanish.
I expect my beloved to be kind, generous, I expect him not to lie so I can look him straight in the eyes, and I expect him to fall in love with me 10 times a day.
I think my dad is the only Arabic descendent who is an unsuccessful businessman.
I'm lucky to have family around me. Otherwise, I'll be taking the risk of falling in love with myself. But there are always people close to me who I trust, who will scold me and pull my ears if I need it. Fame isolates people from reality. That happens to many artists, and I don't want it to happen to me.
I have learned that I am an adult already. And to grow with something is sometimes painful. And its great; I don't say it's a bad thing-but many things change, and many more responsibilities come, and you have more closure in your life, and more possibilities. It's just that it's not as pink as before, but its more interesting.
The cobra is deadly but mongoose can overcome it. We all have possibillity to defeat prejudiced and resentment in our lives. Fear is the thing that makes us attack, that makes us strike. We must overcome it. We must.
I'm a believer. I try to be near God, because when I feel that there's a certain distance, everything begins to look like a blur. It makes the road somewhat smoother. When I feel that I'm without God, I have to make an effort to drag my feet to keep on going.
I think I look like a chipmunk.
The leaders are lacking love, and love is lacking leaders.
I cannot expect that I will be successful my whole life. We live so caught up in the moment, it's important to get some perspective. Ultimately, I know I've been very lucky.
When I perform, I find myself exorcised of everything that keeps me trapped in my everyday life.
A bed is still the first thing I look for when I have 20 free minutes. I still read a book if I have a free hour, and go to a movie if I have four.
I never went through an adolescence when kids become rebels and do drugs.I was always the good girl.
I had my first boyfriend when I was 12, and my parents knew about it. My dad was very jealous. I had an older sister in medical school, and he would not let her wear tight jeans.
Earlier I tried not to show my stomach, because I thought it wasn't perfect and I would have seemed fat. I would have died! But that does not bother me anymore. Like my dad says there is nothing more beautiful than some meat on the bones.
I am a pop star, but I also have an opinion. I grew up in a country that has existed under the whip of violence for 40 years, so how can I not? You know in my country, a 5-year-old knows not only of Disney and Mickey Mouse but of guerrillas and paramilitaries. You grow up with that kind of awareness, of what the world is really like. To be political in my country doesn't mean you want to run for presidency, to be political simply means to have an opinion
Of course I am trying to make my accent not bother anyone, but I am not going to drive myself crazy trying to pretend I am an American girl when I am from Colombia.
I've gone through everything with the paparazzi, where they are even hanging from the trees trying to get a picture. But I have a wonderful relationship with the press. I don't feel mistreated. There is great communication between me and the media, and that makes me feel so lucky because I see how an artist can suffer. But I also live a life a journalist would find very boring. I've been dating the same guy for six years. I'm not a party animal, and you never see me shopping because I hate shopping.
Colombia is a country of victims, and not of murderers.
I do feel that there is a difference between - especially the visual part - what I used to do in Latin America and what I do now. This album (Laundry Service) came out and all of a sudden I saw myself surrounded by 20 stylists, makeup artists, hairdressers, directors, assistant to the director, assistant to the assistant to the director. I try to be in control because some of your essence kind of gets a little hurt. That's why it's so important for me to do these live shows. On the stage, there's no tricks, there's no way to fool anybody, so you either like what you see or you hate it, that's it. It's just the bare truth.
My belly dancing represents me - it's a trademark. I've tried to incorporate it in original ways in modern songs. But sometimes it bugs me a bit that people resort to (saying) that I'm shaking my ass with a huge sexual charge, instead of recognizing it as a move that, yeah, it's loaded with sensuality, but it's also part of an artistic expression.
I certainly don't want to identify with Cinderella, she had a dream that lasted only until midnight. I want it to last until at least 3 a.m.
The industry is a bit more visual oriented (more) towards something to the eyes than something to the ears, That's a bit of a contradiction. We can't forget that, at the end of the day, what really matters here is music. I must confess that sometimes I have been a victim of that.
I guess there's many ways to become an enlightened human being, but I guess the shortest path is always through love. And the shortest path to becoming a better person is always through loving someone. If you don't know how to treat the ones that you love then how are you going to treat those that you don't know, or those who are your enemies?
I think in every artist's life, when, right after a performance, we get to feel a certain loneliness and solitude. After receiving so much attention and love from your fans, suddenly everything stops.
Nationalism is cured by traveling
I want to learn how to live in the present with my eyes open. Because, you know, we always go through the present blindfolded with our hearts in the past and our minds in the future. And that way we never enjoy the here and now.
When you fall in love, you prioritize everything. It's like cleaning up and putting things in place.
I always believed that women have rights and that there are some women that are intelligent enough to claim those rights. There are some others that are stupid enough not to. It is as cut-and dried as that. It doesn't matter if you are a woman or not; in this life, to earn your place you have to fight for it.
My celebrity arrived gradually, and this is why I am not too much shocked or am not traumatised. In spite of that, I am always surprised when I see myself on TV.
For several years I worried a lot about protecting an image, but today I have understood that the image cannot be preconceived.
In any woman's life there's a moment when we stand in front of a mirror and we're not happy. It might be when we're 32 and we think about what it will be like being 36, or when we're 36 we might think of being younger. We're never content with the way we are and the way we look. But, if you start loving yourself the way you are, and accepting yourself the way you are, your outlook totally changes.
I was born close to the ocean and live close to it. I spent all my Sundays on the ocean, and to me it will always be a magical place. I can always find different memories in my head, but special moments were on the ocean or staring at the sea-falling in love, playing, or just talking to myself. It kind of seduces you. But lately I've been fearing it a little bit because of the sharks, the attacks, you know? But then again, they were there first.
In some moment, I came to fall into the claws of moralism. Something very typical for a Latin-American woman, who has lived in a culture of repression. I thought I had all the answers, I was full of hasty judgments. Today I feel more liberated and open. I'm more tolerant. I respect ideas different to mine. Moralism is a disease. It shouldn't be exactly related to religion, - but it is true that my view of religion has also changed lately.
On death: I always tried not to touch that subject, because it would really give me existential anxiety. Death is not only related to the physical death of the body, it's also related to the death of relationships or feelings. Every day, I feel a little bit older, a little less alive, more alive with the possibility of being less alive, closer to death.
One of the ways I grew up was through the loss of people close to me. The person who was my closest friend and who managed me for five years, Patricia Tellez, died suddenly from a blood clot. The other friend, a friend from Barranquilla, died from cancer and she was only 33. She left three children.
Every single project, it doesn't matter how big it is or how small it is, we take it with the same interest and the same enthusiasm, and we make the same effort. I feel the exact thing before I sing on Saturday Night Live as when I sang on a very small TV show in Colombia. Before the first singing contest I ever participated in, I felt the same nervousness I feel now. So part of me gets bigger and keeps evolving, but at the end of the day, you end up feeling the same things.
Technology scares me. We live surrounded by a battalion of sounds, engaged in ostentatious displays of new recording techniques. But, to me, the fundamental essence of a song lies in the melody and the lyrics.
I'm not a model for anyone and the truth is, I never even tried a hit of pot. I'm not saying that I've never ever felt curious, but I feel that if I were doped up I would not even be able to smell, or eat, or breathe, or sing. And I don't want to start using crutches when I know that I can walk. Drug addiction is a loss of freedom.
"Famous Songs of Shakira"
"Famous Songs of Shakira"