Lamont Coleman (May 30, 1974 – February 15, 1999), known professionally as Big L, was an American rapper and songwriter.
Emerging from Harlem, New York in the early to mid-1990s, Coleman became well known amongst underground hip-hop fans for his freestyling ability, and was eventually signed to Columbia Records, where, in 1995, he released his debut album, Lifestylez ov da Poor & Dangerous, an album that is now considered by many fans to be a classic. On February 15, 1999, Coleman was shot nine times by an unknown assailant in East Harlem, New York, his hometown. He died from his injuries.
Noted for his use of wordplay, multiple writers at AllMusic, HipHopDX and The Source have praised Coleman for his lyrical ability, and he has also been described as "one of the most auspicious storytellers in hip hop history." Regarding Coleman's legacy in an interview with Funkmaster Flex, Nas claimed "[Coleman] scared me to death. When I heard [his performance at the Apollo Theater] on tape, I was scared to death. I said, 'Yo, it's no way I can compete if this is what I gotta compete with.'"