Not much time has passed since hardbop fans were faced with alto saxophonist Lou Donaldson's greatness. Thanks to The Rudy van Gelder Edition of the classic records A Night at Birdland Vol. 1 + 2 by the Art Blakey Quintet (predecessor of The Jazz Messengers), the piece Lou's Blues in particular proved that this hardbopper in no way suffered a Charlie Parker complex. Nor did this passionate sax player get bogged down in bop. With his funky album Alligator Boogaloo, Donaldson scored two hit singles and received frequent airplay on R&B radio stations. In the '80s he returned to the hardbop forefront, and he is still a welcome guest there, though the veteran still doesn't shy away from excursions into soul jazz, like with organist Dr. Lonnie Smith. Smith didn't receive his doctorate from any university, but from his fellow musicians. Whenever a band was missing that essential swing or had other inspiration problems, this keyboard wizard could always come up with a remedy to cure musical maladies. In 1969, the magician of the Hammond B3 organ was pronounced top organist and from then on, his name was uttered with reverence. Smith came to fame not only as guitarist George Benson's sideman, but also created a distinct profile for himself with the 30 albums recorded under his own name.