Shakira's hips brings audiences to the Staples Center
Whenever, wherever Shakira performs, people follow.
Fresh off the release of her new album, "Sale El Sol," Shakira delivered a set list of her Spanish and English hits, along with new material off the aforementioned album this past weekend at the Los Angeles Staples Center.
Upon entrance, she opted to come in differently than most standard acts; making her way from the far end of the arena onto the stage and greeting fans along the way.
Once on stage, she kicked things off with a track off her "She Wolf" album before doing an upbeat Spanish song from her first bilingual release, "Laundry Service."
It was the next couple songs that many concertgoers and long time fans would call Shakira "classics," and the audience made sure to show their appreciation.
"Si Te Vas", one of her earliest songs from her career, was a crowd pleaser with the audience singing back every line. The next song, "Whenever, Wherever" included the belly dancing magic that she originally introduced to the English market. "La Tortura" followed in its footsteps with just as immense a reaction and hands up across the arena.
"Underneath Your Clothes" slowed things down before getting back to the dancing with "Gordita," a song off her new album. The album's version features artists Calle 13, a Spanish group, and she surprised the audience with bringing the guy out to do his part from the song.
A highly sexualized performance in both lyrics and dancing, audience members screamed in excitement, and some even began to grind amongst each other. "She Wolf" with its peculiar howling and all, delighted the English speaking fans of the audience while others wished she'd have gone with the Spanish version, "Loba."
Finishing her set with "Ojos Asi," another old track pre-crossover, was the perfect ending for fans who went wanting to see the Shakira they originally came to love.
Returning for an encore, the international superstar ended the show with "Hips Don't Lie" and the official world cup theme song which she wrote "Waka Waka (Time for Africa)" which became universally known. "Hips Don't Lie" brought out Wyclef Jean, whom originally recorded the track with her, and together, both gave the performance the magic that made it one of the biggest songs of 2006.
"Waka, Waka" finished the show with bright colored outfits and lights, not to mention a confetti filled Staples Center for the grand conclusion.
Shakira in every way delivered a memorable, highly entertaining show. She's a crowd pleaser, and given how she has to work harder than other female peers to satisfy an audience, it takes work. She is unique in that she has two audiences, the loyal fan base of hers that has followed her since her 1996 debut to the one that came to know her after she crossed over to English in 2001. She caters to both, or at least she tries. What many fans agree on is that the she-wolf is at her best with her Spanish music and this show was proof.
With the L.A. show she knew a lot of her "people" or as how she said multiple times, "mi gente," were in attendance. Undoubtedly, the Spanish performances outshined the English ones.
There was good response for her songs in English, yet with the Spanish ones, the energy was not only greater but Shakira herself looked like she was having the most fun. Her hips may not lie… but neither does her desire to want to give her fans a bit of both worlds.