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Whenever, Wherever by Shakira
Album: Laundry ServiceReleased: 2001Charted:
Shakira is from Columbia, and Spanish is her native language. The Spanish version of this is called "Suerte," which means "Luck."
This was Shakira's first album recorded in English.
Shakira was a star in Latin America, but this was her first hit in English-speaking countries. The video for this, which was directed by Francis Lawrence, became a huge hit on MTV and introduced her to a new set of fans.
Gloria Estefan wrote this with Shakira. Estefan has had tremendous success recording in both English and Spanish, but like Shakira, her core fan base is Spanish-speaking.
The song is about being willing to travel the world in order to be with a distant lover. Most of the songs Shakira writes are about love.
This was written in Spanish, and the Spanish lyrics are more meaningful. The English translation is a little goofy, with lines like "Lucky my breasts are small and humble so you don't confuse them with mountains." The lack of lyrical depth did not hurt, as the beat, the chorus, and the video made this a hit.
One of the key instruments are Andean pan flutes. They are common in Arabic music, which is a big influence on Shakira.
After this was released, Shakira's boyfriend was the subject of a great deal of controversy. She was dating Antonio De La Rua, the son of Argentinean president Fernando De La Rua, who resigned in December 2001 with Argentina's economy in turmoil. On his last day in office, five protesters were shot by police guarding the presidential palace, which enraged Argentines as well as many other Latin Americans. Considering Shakira guilty by association, Tower Records refused to sell her CD at the request of the president of Tower Records Argentina. The younger De La Rua wrote speeches for his father. He was in the video for another song on the album called "Underneath Your Clothes."