Shakira sells music publishing rights to UK company

By MESFIN FEKADU AP Music Writer

NEW YORK (AP) — The Board of Hipgnosis Songs Fund Limited, a U.K.-based investment company, has acquired 100% of Grammy-winning superstar Shakira’s music publishing rights.

Hipgnosis made the announcement Wednesday. Shakira’s catalog includes 145 songs, including “Hips Don’t Lie,” “Whenever, Wherever,” “La Tortura,” “She Wolf” and “Waka Waka (This Time for Africa).”

Shakira, who released her debut album in 1991 at age 13, rose to international fame with her third album, 1995’s “Pies Descalzos.” The multitalented singer-songwriter-instrumentalist took the American pop scene by storm when she made her U.S. language debut, “Laundry Service,” in 2001. She’s won three Grammy Awards, 12 Latin Grammys, four MTV Video Music Awards, seven Billboard Music Awards and 39 Billboard Latin Music Awards. Overall, Shakira has sold 80 million albums.

“Being a songwriter is an accomplishment that I consider equal to and perhaps even greater than being a singer and an artist. At 8 years old — long before I sang — I wrote to make sense of the world. Each song is a reflection of the person I was at the time that I wrote it, but once a song is out in the world, it belongs not only to me but to those who appreciate it as well,” Shakira said in a statement. “I’m humbled that songwriting has given me the privilege of communicating with others, of being a part of something bigger than myself.”

The announcement of Hipgnosis acquiring Shakira’s catalog comes a week after the company purchased a 50% stake in Neil Young’s music. Last month, Bob Dylan said he sold his publishing rights of more than 600 songs to Universal Music Publishing Group.

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