Lamont Coleman, better known as Big L, died eighteen years ago today. On February 15, 1999 the Hip Hop legend was murdered at 45 West 139th Street in Harlem after being shot nine times in the face and chest in a drive-by shooting. Gerard Woodley, one of Big L’s friends shot in the head near the same street in 2016, was arrested three months later but was shortly released. The shooting was said to have been retaliation for something Big L’s brother did. Unfortunately his murder case remains unsolved.

Big L began his career with the Hip Hop trio, Three the Hard Way. His first notable appearance came on Lord Finesse’s “Yes You May (Remix)”. He released his debut album, Lifestylez of da Poor & Dangerous, in 1995 and in 98′, he founded Flamboyant Entertainment, his own indie label, through which he released one of his most popular singles, “Ebonics”. His second studio album, The Big Picture, was put together by  his manager, Rich King, and released the year after his death. It went certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).

A documentary is in the works titled Street Struck: The Big L Story. Big L is buried at George Washington Memorial Park in Paramus, New Jersey. R.I.P

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