Conversation with Sanz.
The stenography of English subtitles.
(DVD “Fijacion Oral, Vol. 1”).
Age rating: 6+.
S.M. – Shakira Mebarak.
A.S. – Alejandro Sanz.
U.M. – Unknown man.
MIAMI, 10 P.M…
(Alejandro Sanz takes Shakira to home camera).
A.S.: (Joking over Shakira) We’re doing an interview on how to do an interview (Shakira laughs). So we’re going to talk about how I can’t be without makeup or in bad lighting (Shakira laughs).
And if you want to know more about me, keep watching… (Shakira scratch oneself).
Have you finished the video?
A.S.: And the rest is obvious, no? (Shakira laughs). And that’s why we won’t comment on it.
S.M.: No, I can’t do this.
A.S.: Yes, you can.
S.M.: You think you’ll get something?
A.S.: Why are you so beautiful? (Alejandro & Shakira laughs. Shakira scratch eye). Many people must have asked you this before. Well… Do you like the album? Do you like the album? Have you always liked your albums?
A.S.: What a liar (Shakira laughs). Do you know why I like you as an artist? If I can get in the middle.
A.S.: Because you doubt. I like artists who doubt. All of the greatest artists I know have doubts. Yes. This is what makes some of them big and others small.
S.M.: Yes, sometimes I have doubts and don’t love myself.
A.S.: Look, I never love you.
A.S.: I never love you. Doubts are a good thing, no? Do you think doubts are good?
S.M.: A necessary evil, no? (Shakira scratches her back and makes the face).
Let’s see. What did you do? (Shakira wants to take the camera).
A.S.: Let’s go to the studio.
A.S.: Let’s go to the studio.
S.M.: OK, let’s go.
(Alejandro Sanz and Shakira go to the house. Alejandro continues to shoot a film. Someone in the house notices Shakira).
S.M.: What happened?
(Go ahead. Shakira enters the bathroom).
S.M.: (To Alejandro) Are you coming in? (Shakira laughs and closed door near Alejandro’s face. Alejandro scratches into the closed door. Shaki is opening a door and looking on him). What are you doing?
(Shaki waves his hand).
S.M.: We’re going to end up fighting. I always end up fighting with every director.
A.S.: Yes, but you have never worked with Sanz Productions.
What is art to you, besides freezing to death?
S.M.: Besides what?
A.S.: Besides freezing to death.
S.M.: Dying of thirst. This is art, no?
A.S.: Yes… Why? Does art make you thirsty?
S.M.: Art is an inferno.
A.S.: But wonderful.
S.M.: You die of heat, you die of thirst. Eternally.
A.S.: Wow, you look like Michelle Rodriguez.
S.M.: (Shakira laughs) Who is Michelle Rodriguez?
A.S.: This actress who boxes. She looks boxy. She has very strong arms.
S.M.: (She looks at her hands) Do I look boxy?
A.S.: You’re gorgeous. Listen… why would you want to leave Alejandro Sanz looking so bad in the video’s songs and all that? (Shakira & Sanz are laughing). Why does he always look so bad and the girls so good?
S.M.: Because I wanted to bring out of him that vulnerability.
A.S.: Oh, so it was for me?
S.M.: Yes, it was for you.
A.S.: Oh, thanks. I always knew that someday I would have to thank someone for a lashing. This is the moment (Shakira laughs).
Have you stayed calm?
A.S.: After the birth?
S.M.: No. Never. It is forbidden.
A.S.: Have you fought with everyone you’ve worked with?
S.M.: No. They fight with me (Alejandro laughs), because they can’t handle me. I’m a wild… (Shakira laughs) colt (Shakira & Alejandro are laughing). They can’t tame me.
A.S.: I must tell you that you’re very motherly with your projects.
S.M.: Motherly in a protective way.
A.S.: Yes, very protective.
S.M.: When I have children and they’re 15 years old, they’re going to leave.
A.S.: Your poor children. They’re going to say… (Shakira laughs). There’s only one mother. I’m glad. Because if there were two… (Shakira & Alejandro are laughing).
No. Men and women are very different, no? We have a different set of emotions that aren’t any bigger or smaller, but different.
S.M.: We couldn’t agree more.
A.S.: Doesn’t it seem to you like some big universal joke that we live on the same planet? (Alejandro laughs).
S.M.: Not a joke, a curse (Shakira laughs).
A.S.: No, I think that God’s a bit of a joker.
S.M.: All for having stolen an apple.
A.S.: Think about it. With so much fruit available. Having a plantain or a banana.
S.M.: With so much fruit around, why did Eve have to steal that apple? (Shakira laughs).
A.S: And now, we, too, have enjoyed the apple.
S.M.: (Shakira laughs) See? And then they say that us, women are the ones who screw (Shakira & Alejandro are laughing).
You have to go to Barranquilla someday.
A.S.: Yes, I have to go to Barranquilla. I would love it.
S.M.: Let’s go during Carnaval. I’ll go to Cadiz , and you’ll go to Barranquilla.
A.S.: You have to go to the Carnaval in Cadiz, and I’ll go to the one in Barranquilla. And then we’ll contact each other. We go from one to the other.
S.M.: And I’ll dress you up as a spider monkey.
A.S.: Come on. Why, Shaki? Stop destroying my image.
S.M.: No, no, no! (Shakira laughs). Look, the spider monkey is the nicest disguise that exists on earth.
A.S.: It has a pretty name… the spider monkey. Maruja… (Alejandro laughs).
S.M.: Did you know that my studio in the Bahamas is called “Spider Monkey Studio”?
A.S,: Oh, really?
S.M.: Yes. One day I’m going to paint you a spider monkey. So you get to know it better.
A.S.: Why don’t you paint it now? (Shakira laughs).
Let’s go to my studio.
A.S.: Let’s go.
(Shakira sits in the room on the floor next to the guitars. Behind her is a sofa and a table with different stuff).
A.S.: (Alejandro is looking on Shakira’s legs) Are these the nails that I painted for you?
A.S.: You painted them yourself later then?
S.M.: Yes, I had to do it, after the disaster you left behind.
A.S.: “The Disaster You Left Behind.”
S.M.: That would be a good song title.
A.S.: Sure it would. Here we are. Creating little songs where I look good again? (Shakira & Alejandro are laughing).
What did you want to do when you were little? Aside from being an usher in the theater?
S.M.: (Shakira laughs) Apart from wanting to fight with all the directors?
A.S.: Yes, and wanting to turn out the lights.
S.M.: I wanted to be a singer. I wanted to be a singer, an astronaut, and a writer.
A.S.: But I don’t know what a song written by you on the moon would be like (Shakira laughs).
S.M.: Maybe it would be better than the ones I’ve written on earth.
A.S.: Picture this, where Armstrong was walking on the moon, singing something like this.
Have you seen it or not? (Shakira laughs).
S.M.: (Shakira laughs) He’s not singing.
A.S.: Yes, he’s singing or whistling. People say that he’s whistling because it reminds him of America. No, he’s whistling because he’s scared to death. If I were on the moon for the first time, I would say, “Oh, my God. What am I doing here? I could be having a barbecue.”
That’s why it’s great to sing when you’re scared.
S.M.: I sing when I have hope, which is the other side of fear. To sing with fear is ugly. You can’t make music with fear.
A.S.: Not with fear, but as a means of curing yourself of it. Not to say you sing with fear, rather that when you’re scared of something, you sing to distract yourself.
S.M.: Like a cure, a remedy?
A.S.: Yes, like a Band-Aid.
S.M.: No, but I write.
A.S.: Are you scared of planes? What do you do when the plane moves?
S.M.: I move with it.
A.S.: Exactly, exactly. How do you like to travel? In first class.
S.M.: In first class (Shakira & Alejandro are laughing).
A.S.: By plane, by car? How do you prefer to travel?
S.M.: With my head, nothing more (Shakira smiles). You didn’t expect that, did you? (Shakira laughs).
A.S.: I believe the trip is in the middle. Not in the beginning, not the arrival point. You know, the trip is the middle thing. It’s where you stop along the way, the new places you see, the landscapes. You can’t see anything from the airplane.
S.M.: I still have a lot to learn. I still need to learn… like traveling, for example.
I still have to learn that.
A.S.: Did you travel a lot with your family when you were little, from one city to another?
A.S. In my family, we used to travel a lot.
S.M.: In Spain, people travel a lot. Highways are used a lot.
How would you like to see Colombia?
S.M.: With better roads (Shakira & Alejandro are laughing). (After a short pause with a serious face) How would I like Colombia? Well, without blood. So everything would be green and not red from blood staining the forest, the jungle, the prairie, and the meadow. The way it is. Like when it was made.
A.S.: Colombia misses you, no?
A.S.: Colombia hurts you? Your homeland hurts you?
S.M.: Of course, how can a mother not hurt you? Does your mother hurt you?
A.S.: When she hits me, yes (Shakira & Alejandro are laughing).
Machismo or feminism?
S.M.: The “ismo.”
A.S.: All the “ismos”, right?
S.M.: All the “ismos”, right?
A.S.: I was once in a “seismo,” and it was terrible, too.
S.M.: In a what?
A.S.: In a “seismo.”
S.M.: (Shakira laughs) “Seismo”? What is that?
A.S.: An earthquake.
S.M.: Ah! A “sismo”.
A.S.: No. “Seismo.” (Shakira & Alejandro are laughing).
S.M.: I have been in several.
A.S.: You’ve been in several?
S.M.: Yes, like in three earthquakes.
S.M.: In Mexico… No. In Chile, in Bogota, and in Vancouver. What about you?
A.S.: I’ve never been through one.
A.S.: No. And only two wasps have stung me in my life.
S.M.: So it’s about time. I’ve never been stung by a wasp. But it’s time for you to be in an earthquake, no?
A.S.: And for you to be stung by a wasp. (Shakira & Alejandro are laughing, Shakira took a bottle and started to drink something). What did you feel during the earthquakes? How does it feel? It’s like you say… I don’t know. It’s bad or what? Where should I hide? In that moment, do you think about someone or something? Is it true that your life passes in front of you, or rather behind you? (Shakira laughs).
S.M.: Before, I thought that my life was absolutely transcendental. I thought that I was never going to die. And now I realize that someday I will. Someday I will die.
A.S.: Surely. (Shakira laughs) What an optimist you are.
S.M.: I was hoping that you would say something else. That you would say, “No, Shaki.”
A.S.: How are you going to die? Are you going to die? If Chavez doesn’t die, you’re not going to die (Shakira & Alejandro are laughing, Shakira chokes on the drink).
S.M.: No. That can’t go in the interview. That has to be edited.
A.S.: I believe that nobody wants to die, in fact. Everybody is afraid of the end.
Are you afraid of it?
S.M.: Me, afraid? Yes. It’s what I’m most afraid of.
S.M.: Yes. All types of death scare me. That’s the problem, that one continues dying in life. Not just one, everybody.
A.S.: How many deaths do you think there are? Well, the spiritual, death…
Anyway, do you like the paella?
S.M.: (Shakira laughs) Not anymore (Shakira laughs).
A.S.: Oh, really. This is going to Spain, too.
S.M.: I liked it until I sent just a little bit to a friend, and he almost got food poisoning.
A.S.: That wasn’t paella.
S.M.: What was it?
A.S.: It was actually sancocho apaellado (Shakira & Alejandro are laughing).
S.M.: It was made by a Spanish woman.
S.M.: Her name is Isabel (Shakira laughs).
A.S.: See? She has the name like the tuna fish (Shakira & Alejandro are laughing).
S.M.: A name like the tuna fish? My name is Isabel, too.
A.S.: That’s why it’s a tuna name. Isabel Tuna. Haven’t you heard of it?
S.M.: My name is Shakira Isabel.
A.S.: Your name is Shakira Isabel?
S.M.: You didn’t know?
A.S.: Hi, pleased to meet you.
S.M.: Hi, nice to meet you.
(It seems that Shakira reaches for the camcorder, but shakes Alejandro’s hand).
A.S.: A pleasure.
S.M.: Thank you.
A.S.: Hey, don’t touch me there (Shakira & Alejandro are laughing).
How was the experience of making the video?
S.M.: Hmm… an experience.
A.S.: What did you feel in the tomato scene? (Shakira & Alejandro are laughing).
S.M.: I’m going to hit you with a bottle (Alejandro laughs). Have they ever hit you with a bottle at this time?
A.S.: Listen to me.
S.M.: Or with a tomato?
A.S.: “The Taking of the Tomatoes.” That would be a good title.
S.M.: The Taking of the Tomatoes (Shakira laughs).
A.S.: There’s a microsecond where… it seems that Alejandro already knew you from before (Shakira & Alejandro are laughing).
S.M.: That scene should be in Miguel Bose’s video.
A.S.: Is sensuality a part of your life? Of your daily life? Not just your professional life?
S.M.: I don’t know.
A.S.: I don’t know if I’m sensual. You tell me (Shakira & Alejandro are laughing). I think you are. Sensuality, well, I don’t know, you should know. Sensuality is the empire of the senses.
S.M.: Yes, the sensorial. And the sensual. And it’s the only little thing that we have left, right? In life.
A.S.: Well, if you look at me with that face, yes (Shakira & Alejandro are laughing).
S.M.: So one can feel that they’re alive, right?
S.M.: There’s where beauty lies, the sensorial… And everything else… they’re the product of those two parents.
A.S.: Of the “chingada.” (Alejandro laughs).
S.M.: Of beauty and sensorial. That is, art is a product of that marriage.
A.S.: Yes, totally.
I love the song you wrote for Antonio.
S.M.: You liked it?
A.S.: Very much. Very nice. No one has ever written a song like that for me.
S.M.: Me neither.
A.S.: How about we write each other two songs? (Alejandro laughs).
S.M.: You want to? (Shakira laughs). That way we won’t die without having a song written to us.
A.S.: It’s true. It’s just that, you know… I would have liked to have a song like that written to me. You have a lot of talent, you know?
S.M.: Thank you. You, too.
A.S.: Well, I’m just starting out in the movie industry, but… (Shakira & Alejandro are laughing).
S.M.: You’re doing great (Shakira laughs).
Yeah, there are two ways to see life… one is like this, and the other is thinking of ourselves as a simple part of everything. We each have to be grateful for being here as a human being. And to make the best of it all. Each second of our great second.
They’re going to make a sculpture of me in Barranquilla.
A.S.: Oh, yeah?
S.M.: They should make it like this.
A.S.: They’re going to make a sculpture? Begging.
S.M.: Where am I going to be? You know that I’m a bottomless barrel?
S.M.: I don’t know why. It’s never enough for me…
A.S.: Yeah, right?
S.M.: Haven’t you realized that every time that I come here, I take a jacket? (Shakira laughs).
A.S.: Yeah, it’s true. You’ve already stolen at least six of my jackets, Shaki.
S.M.: I can’t eat only one slice of cheese. I have to eat 20 slices.
S.M.: And I still feel the need to eat more cheese.
A.S.: Queso Manchego, at that.
S.M.: Queso Manchego.
A.S.: It’s good, no?
S.M.: Very good.
A.S.: Are you tired of this interview?
S.M.: No. Why?
A.S.: Are you sick of interviews? At times, yes?
S.M.: Not this one. Some, yes. But interviews are good. They’re like catharsis, right?
A.S.: Some, right?
A.S.: There are a lot of terrorists working as journalists.
A.S.: There are a lot of terrorists working as journalists.
S.M.: What happens to me is when they ask for my profession at the airport…
Or in the immigration forms that you need to fill out.
A.S.: I put rock star (Shakira laughs). I’ve always put that. I think it’s fair.
S.M.: I can’t do that. What should I say? What should I say?
A.S.: Just say rock star, that’s all. (Shakira & Sanz are laughing). You have to do it. If you’re not, then who?
S.M.: I’m a singer.
A.S.: That’s what Gross puts. That’s what all those people put. When they ask them for their profession (Shakira laughs).
S.M.: You’re going to ruin my DVD. They’ll hit me in the eye.
A.S.: I haven’t said anything. It would be great if you put that (Shakira laughs).
S.M.: Let’s see, singer, it’s very romantic to say, “I’m a singer.” The singers. The singers are coming (Shakira & Alejandro are laughing).
A.S.: Ms. Laura, the singers are coming today.
S.M.: Let the singers through! (Shakira & Sanz are laughing).
A.S.: What kind of TV show do you like?
S.M.: Well, I like… I like… nothing (Shakira laughs).
A.S.: Wow. Stop, stop, stop (Shakira laughs). I can’t handle so much information.
S.M.: No. Comedy.
S.M.: Only that. Only that. I can’t watch anything else. It has to be comedy or Animal Planet.
A.S.: So documentaries.
A.S.: Or movies, I don’t know.
S.M.: Hmm… Yes, but I don’t like anything.
A.S.: There are some shows that help people, no? I like “Laura in America.”
S.M.: (Shakira laughs) Me, too. I like her…
A.S.: I think she changes people’s lives.
S.M.: You know which TV shows I like? Those trivia Spanish shows. Like “Know and Win” and all that.
A.S.: Ah, give me a word and all that.
A.S.: Those are good.
S.M.: There is one that has this host that says, “Gazapo, gazapo.” (Alejandro laughs). What is gazapo?
A.S.: What does he say?
S.M.: Gazapo, gazapo.
A.S.: Gazapo is when you see yourself in a mistake.
S.M.: Gazapo, gazapo.
Yes. I always try, but… it always backfires.
A.S.: Or from the crutch. The shot from the crutch (Shakira & Alejandro are laughing).
S.M.: It would be… almost impossible.
A.S.: OK, I’m going to tell you… the same thing I told you yesterday on the boat.
It has been an honor working and singing with you. That is the truth.
S.M.: Same to you.
A.S.: Chatting with you.
(Shakira lies in bed and falls asleep).
S.M.: I’ve run out of opinions. No, not all of them, but they’re all coming to an end. This is tragic, no?
Text by Shmanich.