Shakira & Maluma Smolder On A Joint ‘Billboard’ Cover

Mike Nied | April 19, 2018 11:43 am

Shakira and Maluma join forces for a sexy photoshoot in the latest edition of Billboard. The Colombian superstars smolder on the cover of the publication’s Latin issue. Dressed in distressed denim and a white tank, the 24-year-old reclines on a sofa while Shaki stuns in all black lace and leather. The cover reads “Watch the Throne,” an allusion to their stunning dominance of charts and their ability to always be on the cutting edge of emerging trends. Shot by Ruven Afanador, the remaining photos are equally striking with the duo delivering seemingly endless poses. Each picture resonates with warmth, and based on previous collaborations on “Chantaje” and “Trap,” we already know the twosome have perfect chemistry.

Released today (April 19), the accompanying interview highlights their chemistry and discusses their thoughts about emerging on the scene as Latin artists. Maluma was very candid about the opportunity to hit the studio with the 41-year-old icon. “I felt very proud because this was an opportunity for me to learn. I’m a new talent. My musical career is 6 years old. That’s nothing. And to go to Barcelona and meet with her, it was a beautiful experience,” he gushed. Not to be outdone, the “She Wolf” siren shared some positive reflections about her experience with him. “Maluma is one of the most talented people I’ve met. He has this mental agility to write lyrics, melodies, and the best thing is, we always agree.” Laughingly, she added that may be due to the fact that he refers to her as reina (queen) “all the time.”

Reflecting on her rise to the top, Shakira said it was difficult in an era without social media to get her message out. “The path to success has been longer, steeper, with more obstacles than if I had been born in Florida or New York City,” she admitted. “I had to travel the entire length of Latin America to make my music known in the beginning, going from radio station to radio station. Sometimes we were in three countries in the same day.” In comparison, Maluma has steadily amassed a following on social media, but he said that didn’t guarantee his music would be heard and appreciated. “But that didn’t mean that they were going to like my music in the U.S. I always say with a lot of pride that Latins have something in our blood that can’t be found everywhere, and that is fashionable around the world now.”

Over the course of their careers, both artists have been referred to a sex symbol with some frequency. However, they admitted to having conflicted opinions about the status. “I don’t feel like a sex symbol,” Shaki said. “It’s possible many people see me as a sex symbol and others do not. Other people see me as a person that has kept them company through their lives with music, someone who they’re fond of.” Her collaborator agreed, adding that he works on himself because he enjoys it. “I don’t wake up in the morning, look at myself in the mirror and say, ‘I’m a sex symbol.’ I go to the gym because I like to work out, not to have my dancers touch me onstage.”

He went on to explain that his music is driving him past simply being sexy. “I think I’m reaching an incredible moment in my musical career where I’m looking for something more spiritual. And when you don’t want to look like a sex symbol but as a more interesting person, women are attracted to that.” The rest of the interview touches on building music around dance and the resurgence of Latin music on charts across the globe. Scroll through a gallery of the pictures up top and read the rest of their interview here!

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