A Top Ten recording artist in her native Italy ever since her 1993 eponymous debut, Laura Pausini has sold tens of millions of albums worldwide, charting across Europe and Latin America. Her heartfelt adult contemporary pop and soaring vocals put her in the stylistic company of artists such as Celine Dion and Michael Bolton. Pausini went all the way to number one in Italy for the first time with her fourth studio album, 1998's La Mia Risposta. After a couple more albums, including an attempt to break into English-speaking markets (2002's From the Inside), she returned to the top of the chart with 2004's Resta in Ascolto. It kicked off a streak of consecutive Italian number ones lasting through the 2010s, including her 2016 Christmas album, Laura Xmas, which had songs performed in Italian, Spanish, English, and French.
Laura Pausini was born in Faenza, Ravenna, in 1974. A singer from a young age, she made her live performance debut at 12. Her recording debut followed at the age of 18 with 1993's Laura Pausini. Featuring the single "La Solitudine," which was a number one hit in Italy, the album went to number six, also charting in countries such as France, Belgium, and the Netherlands. A year later — in a practice that would come to define her career and compound her success — she released a Spanish version of her debut, including a version of her breakthrough hit, titled accordingly "Lo Soledad." Laura and Le Cose Che Vivi/Las Cosas Que Vives followed in 1995 and 1996, respectively, both of them Italian number two hits. The former release topped the album chart in the Netherlands, and the latter album reached the top spot in Switzerland. Released in late 1998, Mia Risposta/Mi Respuesta became her first Italian number one. Two years later, she issued Tra Te e il Mare/Entre Tu y Mil Mares, which reached the Top Five in Italy, Finland, Spain, and Switzerland.
During these years, Pausini accepted invitations to sing for Pope John Paul II at a special Vatican Christmas mass and at Barbra Streisand's birthday party in 1998, as well as embarking on sold-out world tours. She capped off this run of success with the greatest-hits collection The Best of Laura Pausini/Lo Mejor de Laura Pausini, which was followed by her first English-language album, 2002's From the Inside. While the album didn't chart in English-speaking regions, it was well received by her established fan base. Pausini took some time off following the associated world tour, returning in late 2004 with Resta in Ascolto/Escucha. Thanks in part to the chart-topping title track, it became her second number one album in Italy. Warner Music Latina reissued the album in America in late 2005 to capitalize on its Latin Grammy nomination for Best Female Pop Vocal Album, adding bonus material. Shortly after she won that Grammy Award, Warner released a live set, Live in Paris 05, to capitalize on the momentum.
Following that success, Pausini was given free rein to record an album of covers, 2006's Io Canto/Yo Canto, consisting of Italian pop/rock songs, mainly from the '90s, that had greatly influenced her. Selling over 500,000 copies, Io Canto/Yo Canto was the biggest-selling album of the year in Italy, and she also collected the award for Best Female Pop Vocal Album at the Latin Grammy Awards. In 2007, Pausini became the first female artist to perform at the San Siro Stadium in Milan, with the show being released in November that year under the title San Siro 2007.
In 2008, Pausini released her tenth studio album, Primavera in Anticipo/Primavera Anticipada, which included the hit single "Invece No"/"En Cambio No," as well as a duet with British singer/songwriter James Blunt. The year 2009 saw the singer organize another concert at the San Siro — this time featuring a host of female artists — to raise money for those affected by that year's L'Aquila earthquake. The resulting video followed in mid-2010. Pausini continued to tour before going to work on her next album, Inedito/Inédito. Released in 2011, the record was promoted on the Inedito World Tour, which included a date at London's Royal Albert Hall.
In late 2012, Pausini recorded a duet with Josh Groban for his album All That Echoes, before reissuing her 1993 single "La Solitudine" to celebrate its 20-year anniversary. It became part of a special 20th anniversary year, with the album 20: The Greatest Hits/20: Grandes Exitos appearing in 2013. A mixture of vintage and new recordings, it included feature appearances by many of Pausini's friends and fellow superstars, including Kylie Minogue on the number one Italian hit "Limpido" and Thalía on the Top Ten "Se Non Te." Also making appearances were Marc Anthony, Lara Fabian, Alejandro Sanz, and Andrea Bocelli. The album sold over a million copies globally and topped the charts in her native Italy as well as in Malta, Mexico, and Switzerland. Her Greatest Hits World Tour took her across Europe, Latin America, Australia, and, for the first time, to Russia.
She returned to recording in late 2014, working in studios across Europe with a several producers and session musicians. The first single, "Lato Destro del Cuore," was released in October 2015, followed by the album Simili in November (issued in both Italian and Castilian editions). She promoted the recording with an unprecedented series of Sunday-evening appearances on Univision's La Banda throughout the end of the year. In the meantime, she also appeared as a coach the Spanish version of TV singing competition The Voice (La Voz). The following year she issued a pair of Christmas collections: Laura Xmas in English and Laura Navidad in Spanish.
In 2018, Pausini delivered her 13th studio album, Fatti Sentire (and its Spanish version). It became her seventh consecutive number one album in her home country. A deluxe reissue titled Fatti Sentire Acora was released at the end of 2018 and featured a duet version of the song "Il Coraggio di Andare" with Italian singer Biagio Antonacci. Also that year, Pausini appeared as a judge on the Spanish version of the X Factor, Factor X. ~ Jason Birchmeier & Marcy Donelson