Shakira is set to receive the Video Vanguard Award at the 2023 MTV Video Music Awards. Thanks to her nearly 30 years of releasing hits in both Spanish and English, the Colombian icon will become the first artist from Latin America to be awarded with the top honor. Shakira will also perform at the event.
Since breaking through in 1995 with “Estoy Aquí,” Shakira has become an artist of reinvention and longevity. In the following decades, she delivered songs that have become classics with music videos that are equally iconic. Latin music’s global breakthrough is largely indebted to Shakira for the boundaries she broke down as a fearless and fierce pop star. Even in the digital and streaming era, Shakira reigns supreme with 57 videos on YouTube with over 100 million views each. Before the MTV VMAs take place on September 12, LATINA is looking back at 10 of our favorite music videos from the Queen of Latin Music.
10. “Chantaje” with Maluma (2016)
In 2016, Shakira teamed up with another Colombian star who was then on the rise, Maluma. After scoring the first reggaeton hit by a Colombian artist a decade ago, she revisited the genre in this alluring collaboration. Shakira masterfully translated the sexual tension from the song into the captivating music video with Maluma.
9. “Whenever, Wherever” (2001)
Shakira crossed over to the English-language market with “Whenever, Wherever” in 2001. In the playful song, she sang the timeless words: “Lucky that my breasts are small and humble / so you don’t confuse them with mountains.” The rustic music video captured an ambitious Shakira who was unafraid to wander the earth on her path to global domination.
8. “TQG” with Karol G (2023)
Two Colombian superstars joined forces in the fiery “TQG” music video. Karol G teamed up with Shakira and the women lyrically torched any remnants of their toxic exes. “That made my life!” Karol G told Latina back in February. “That made me so happy. I feel like the people in Colombia will be like, ‘Wow! It’s incredible that we have this moment with this female collaboration in front of the world.’”
7. “Acróstico” (2023)
After breaking up with Gerard Piqué, Shakira found healing in her music. The most beautiful song to come out of those sessions was “Acróstico,” her heartfelt ballad to her sons. To give the sweet music video a more personal touch, Sasha and Milan joined their mother at the piano to sing the song together.
6. “Ojos Así” (1998)
Shakira marked a generation of Latinas in the late 90s and early 2000s with the “Ojos Así” music video. The red streaks in her hair became one of her most iconic looks. Shakira embraced her Lebanese roots in the video where she also belly danced for the first time. This would become one of her signature moves as we would see later on.
5. “Beautiful Liar” with Beyoncé (2007)
Something shifted in the universe when Beyoncé and Shakira joined forces. The pop queens teamed up for “Beautiful Liar” in 2007. Beyoncé and Shakira looked like goddesses as they danced to the knockout track together. Beyoncé has a day off from the Renaissance Tour on September 12, so hopefully she performs the song with Shakira for the first time at the VMAs.
4. “BZRP Music Sessions, Vol. 53” with Bizarrap (2023)
Shakira released one of the biggest hits of the year with “BZRP Music Sessions, Vol. 53.” She teamed up with Argentine producer Bizarrap for the kiss-off anthem. The music video showed Shakira in the recording studio with Bizarrap. She looked like she was having a blast as she unleashed a barrage of lyrical jabs.
3. “She Wolf” (2009)
Shakira empowered women and her fans in the LGBTQ+ community to unleash their inner “She Wolf.” In 2009, she released the disco-infused banger and campy classic in English and Spanish. The “She Wolf” really came to life in the fierce music video where Shakira danced like there was no tomorrow.
2. “Hips Don’t Lie” with Wyclef Jean (2006)
Shakira cemented her place in pop music history with “Hips Don’t Lie” featuring Wyclef Jean. She earned her first No. 1 hit on the Billboard Hot 100 chart back in 2006. In the colorful music video, Shakira masterfully translated the words of the seductive song into her hypnotic dance moves. Body language is universal and Shakira has always used that to her advantage.
1. “La Tortura” with Alejandro Sanz (2005)
Instead of releasing another English album following 2001’s Laundry Service, Shakira proved that she could put her global audience onto her music in Spanish. With the reggaeton romp “La Tortura,” she broke records and pulled in unprecedented sales in 2005 for an all-Spanish song. In the red-hot music video, she captivated her duet partner Alejandro Sanz and the world with her sexy dance moves.
Lucas Villa is a freelance music contributor for LATINA. His work is also featured in Rolling Stone, Billboard, Teen Vogue, MTV News and W Magazine.