Proud St. Louis native, artist and producer Van “Vandalyzm” Coleman, is not your ordinary emcee. While hip hop to his core, Vandalyzm is a true student of music itself. He credits Burt Bacharach as one of his favorite composers of all time, along with David Axelrod, Quincy Jones, Barry White and Isaac Hayes. His influences vary greatly – from the likes of Donny Hathaway and The Sylvers, to Daft Punk and Nirvana, to Arthur Verocai, to J. Dilla. He fuses it all to create his versatile sound.
He has racked up production and writing credits with Flying Lotus, Outasight, 9th Wonder, Royce da 5'9, Skyzoo, Oddisee, Naledge of Kidz in the Hall, One Chance (T Pain's Nappy Boy/ Usher's Us Records imprint) and others.
Not to be eclipsed by his talent as a producer is Vandalyzm’s undeniable stage presence. He has shared the stage with Kendrick Lamar, Big Krit, Schoolboy Q, Danny Brown, Dom Kennedy, Black Milk, Jean Grae, Murs, Black Sheep, Slum Village, Bel Biv Devoe and many more.
In addition, Vandalyzm received the highest of praise in HipHopDX.com’s DX Next column in 2008, was voted “Best St. Louis Hip Hop Artist” by the Riverfront Times, has been featured on several prominent hip hop sites, such as smokingsection.com and NahRight.com, and his debut album, Megatron Majorz Redux, broke through the Top 30 Hip Hop releases on iTunes.
Though still building his name, Vandalyzm is anything but a novice at hip hop, bringing a sound that strays far from the stereotypical STL vibe, yet stays true to his self and his pride in where he’s from. And he has the star quality to match his extensive resume. Not to be mistaken with the trite “swagger” that too many rappers of today rely on instead of actual talent, Vandalyzm is first and foremost a lyricist—impeccable wordplay, seamless story-telling skills, and a fluid flow that’s sure to drown all naysayers.
"I’m a regular dude who came up rough, and decided to go a different route than most folks in my situation,” Vandalyzm declares. “So the music I create is reflective of that. I talk about it all, from women, to clothes, to battling, to revolution. My music isn’t linear because my life isn’t. I feel like that skill keeps me ahead of the pack. Put me on any type of song, with any artist, and I won’t sound out of place."