La Sonora Dinamita is a Colombian cumbia group. As one of the first cumbia groups to reach international success, it is credited with helping to popularize the genre throughout Latin America.|
The original orchestra was formed in 1960 in Cartagena de Indias under the direction of bandleader Lucho Argaín. It disbanded in 1963, but was re-formed in 1975 under the direction of Julio Ernesto Estrada “Fruko” Rincón, the artistic director of the Discos Fuentes record label. In 1981, Mélida Yará, better-known as “La India Meliyará” became the lead vocalist. It was while Yará was the lead singer that the group released its most successful recordings, such as the classic “Mi Cucu.” While the group’s lineup has changed, it has always featured a strong female vocalist to accompany its ten-piece brass instrumentation. They include Margarita Vargas, the singer of “A Mover la Colita,” and from La Internacional Sonora Show, Vilma Díaz, the singer of 1993’s “Escándalo”, and the Salvadorean Susana Velásquez. Important male singers have included Macondo, Álvaro Pava, and Álvaro Pizarro.
The group continues to perform in the United States as La Internacional Sonora Show, led by bandleader Kiko Vargas Jr., son of the founder of the original touring version La Internacional Sonora Dinamita Show.