For the most part, Sophisticated Lou found Lou Donaldson returning to standards after spending several years cranking out commercially oriented soul-jazz. Supported by a lush string section, Donaldson plays sensitive, pretty versions of such familiar items as "Stella By Starlight," "What Are You Doing the Rest of Your Life," "Autumn in New York" and "Time After Time," plus a new reading of his "Blues Walk" and a cover of Stevie Wonder's "You Are the Sunshine of My Life." Sophisticated Lou pales when compared to the great Lush Life, but it remains a fairly successful effort, and it's a nice change of pace after several albums of funky soul-jazz.
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AllMusic Review by Stephen Thomas Erlewine