Kate Campbell's newest albums -- The singer/songwriter releases two new discs, ''The Portable Kate Campbell'' and ''Sing Me Out''

By Bob Cannon
Updated September 03, 2004 at 04:00 AM EDT

Through seven CDs, Kate Campbell has been something of a musical Eudora Welty, chronicling Southern life with an eye for illuminating detail and a knack for creating memorable, sometimes wacky characters. On these two releases, she revisits 30 tunes from her catalog, breathing new life into oughta-be classics like The Portable Kate Campbell‘s elegiac ”Moonpie Dreams” and Sing Me Out‘s wry ”Jesus & Tomatoes,” in which Campbell bribes the Almighty’s lawyer with a BLT sandwich. Take your pick?either collection serves as a tempting appetizer to a literate songsmith who’s as satisfying as barbecue and sweet tea. Portable: A Sing: B+