Slugs & Bugs is among the most revered and critically-lauded series in Christian family entertainment. Boasting a total of six recordings; two Dove Award nominations; a vibrant social media community; and an annual slate of popular concerts across the U.S. and the U.K., at the pulsing, creative center of Slugs & Bugs is acclaimed singer/songwriter Randall Goodgame. Hailed by CCMMagazine.com as “…the greatest thing to happen to children’s music in a generation,” Goodgame has a deep and abiding passion for helping make the Gospel accessible to families.
Launching his career in Christian music as a hit songwriter for the likes of Caedmon’s Call, Jason Gray and Ginny Owens, it was Goodgame’s friendship with renowned singer/songwriter Andrew Peterson that helped shift his trajectory. In 2007, the young fathers collaborated on a collection of songs they’d penned for their children: Slugs & Bugs & Lullabies. The well-received side project led to Goodgame’s stint as a writer of “silly songs” for VeggieTales, and his calling in family entertainment was solidified.
“If a child’s favorite music is richly layered with high-caliber musicianship and strong, enduring melodies, it deepens and broadens their palate for beautiful things in all aspects of life,” Goodgame says of his philosophy. “Whether you’re reading ‘Hamlet’ or ‘Charlotte’s Web,’ great writing helps develop reading skills and a love of language, and I hope Slugs & Bugs can impact children’s love and appreciation for music.”
Solely curating the tour-de-force Slugs & Bugs series these days, Goodgame has become a rock star of the genre to both children and parents. Combining first-class artistry—he and his slew of ultra-talented collaborators—with lyrics rich in timeless Truth has proven a surefire recipe for success. In short, Slugs & Bugs songs may catch the ears of kids, but they pierce the hearts of moms and dads, opening a precious door for families to worship Jesus and grow in the Word together.
“With artistic excellence, Gospel clarity, and child-like joy, Slugs & Bugs exists to be the world’s most fun tool for spiritual growth,” Goodgame states of the series’ overall mission. “My prayer is that through listening together the music will help children grow into disciples and help parents grow into children.”
In his ever-enduring quest to find fresh, innovative ways to communicate Truth, Goodgame introduced Sing the Bible with Slugs & Bugs in 2014, an entire project of word-for-word Scripture songs. The album earned a Dove Award nomination, as did its follow-up, 2015’s Sing the Bible, Volume 2, and a subseries within the Slugs & Bugs brand was effectively launched.
“I started writing Scripture songs because we were homeschooling our kids, and I was in charge of Scripture memorization. It worked so well that I decided to share them with the Slugs & Bugs fans, and the Sing the Bible series was born,” he explains. “Nothing has impacted my daily, hourly, moment-by-moment walk with Jesus as much as memorizing and meditating on His Word, so of course, I want that for my kids, and for all kids everywhere. And since we work hard to make the music appealing for parents as well, whole families can grow together in their love and knowledge of the Word."
Sing the Bible with Slugs & Bugs Volume 3, the latest project in the series, features contributions from such award-winning singer/songwriters as Bart Millard (MercyMe), Mike Weaver (Big Daddy Weave), Sara Groves and Andrew Peterson; as well as acclaimed hip-hop and spoken-word recording artist Propaganda and New York Times bestselling author Sally Lloyd-Jones, among others.
The set showcases original music compositions as well as spoken character vignettes. Highlights include toe-tappers “Get Up!” (feat. Propaganda) and “The Beatitudes”; “I Am The Way,” with lead vocals from Big Daddy Weave’s Mike Weaver; the inspirational ballad “Living Water”; and “Not By Bread Alone,” a Matthew 4:4 chorus featuring the multi-layered harmonies of MercyMe’s Bart Millard.
In addition to music, Sing the Bible Volume 3 welcomes back a Slugs & Bugs fan favorite—Chauncy Raccoon, voiced by Andrew Peterson. Along with his friends Mortimer Raccoon (Bart Millard) and “hard-nosed reporter” Sally Lloyd-Jones, Chauncy teaches the importance of being a humble giver (Matthew 6:2-4) through the adventures of the “Society Of Extraordinary Raccoon Society.”
“The lyrics on Sing the Bible Volume 3 come straight from Scripture, and focus on the life, words, and work of our Lord Jesus, the Savior of the world,” explains Goodgame. “Eleven of the songs draw from His spoken words, while the other verses point to His love, His lordship, and how we live in Him. He is the Vine, we are the branches! Let us be transformed by His purpose. I pray these verses take root in all of us as they point to the nourishment that only the Holy Spirit can provide.”
“I love being a dad and I love the Gospel,” Goodgame says, articulating the motivation behind the Slugs & Bugs brand. Seeing families around the world impacted by Scriptural Truth set to music is gratifying, but watching his own children draw closer to the Lord in this way is the pulse of Randall Goodgame’s purpose.
Along with his wife, Amy, Goodgame’s children Livi (17), Jonah (15) and Benjamin (10) are all regularly featured on their dad’s recordings, making Slugs & Bugs a family affair in every way. But music is among a wealth of activities the Goodgames enjoy together. “We take advantage of the outdoors whenever we can,” he shares, “whether that means going on a spontaneous picnic or planning a day hike.”
“Seeing our kids grow and change makes life exciting, and it keeps us on our toes. Livi plays the fiddle and Ben plays the piano, while Jonah is on the chess team and loves running cross-country. They all love to read, and of course we enjoy watching movies together.”
Like every family, the Goodgames face conflicts from time to time. “Amy and I try to lead the way by being the ‘chief repenters,’” Goodgame explains. “Getting angry and sinning against one another are inevitable in a family, but they are opportunities to participate in the beautiful, total forgiveness established by Jesus on the cross.”
“I am at my best as a parent when I remember that my kids are just like me, struggling into the journey of discipleship, just a few years behind,” he concludes. “If I can use my gifts to help parents navigate that journey with their kids, then that’s what I want to do.