Journey from alcoholic to apostle transferred to song

Author Mark McFadden with his book Don’t Go There.

AUTHOR Martin Jim McFadden has transferred his journey from chronic alcoholic to devout Christian into song.

‘Rich Man Poor Man’ has been viewed hundreds of times since being released via the video sharing website, Youtube.


A gospel tune, Rich Man Poor Man was recorded by well-known singer Joe Gibson in the Letterkenny studio of music tutor and engineer Tommy Conway.

It is the latest landmark on Martin McFadden’s Road to Damascus conversion from down and out, to son of the Catholic Church.
Martin Jim McFadden’s book, Don’t Go There, has just become available on and it reveals how, from his early days growing up in rural Donegal, he, quite literally, fell around the world in a drunken stupor.

A compensation claim of almost £100,000 punts following a road accident that almost cost him his life enabled him to feed his habit.

The cash took him from quiet Carrigart to Dublin, London, Newcastle and even America and involved countless brushes with the law.

An encounter with a kindly priest and the attention of the Strabane woman who would eventually become his wife helped him grapple back from the brink of destruction and he has now been sober for over a decade.

“The song came to me in a dream,” Martin told the Chronicle this week.
“I wrote it about a year ago but then it got sidelined and only recently I went back to it. I showed it to a couple of people and they gave it the thumbs up.

“I took it to Tommy Conway’s studio and Joe recorded it in a single day. It has had a good reaction so far and hopefully people enjoy it.”

As well as penning ‘Rich Man Poor Man’, Martin is preparing to tell his story onstage.

On Saturday, June 24, Martin will regale an audience at Strabane’s Alley Theatre with his spiral into drunken despair and his journey back again.

The show is being arranged by Donegal woman, Lorna Baldrick, and tickets for ‘Don’t Go There – A True Account of an Alcoholic’s Journey to Sobriety’ are £5.

They are available today by contacting the Alley box office on 7188 4760 or at
You can check out ‘Rich Man Poor Man’ on Youtube or at


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