If you have positive or critical comments about any of our products or services we’d love to hear from you too! Please see our Comment Request Form.
“This book actually sounded too good to be true, so I checked it out of the library. It’s so incredibly awesome that I’m buying it now, and hope to make even more progress.
—Steven Plaat, Columbus, OH
“I have recommended your book to others for years. I bought this book a number of years ago. You have turned me from a non-reader to a super sight-reader and I am grateful. You have made a difference in the way I teach school. What a blessing! Thank you!”
Public School Music Educator
Hudson, NY www.funwithscales.com
“You helped my mother play at her church with the Super Sight-Reading Secrets… the transformation was extraordinary.”
Grand Junction, CO
“Thank you for providing piano educators with a most useful tool.”
—Jeanine M. Jacobson, Assistant Professor,
Piano proficiency class for piano majors,
California State University, Northridge
“This is the best book on sight reading. It contains all the fundamentals; they are described in complete detail, teaching us all the correct terminology and methodologies. It starts from how to read music, for the beginner, and advances logically all the way to advanced sight reading levels; it is especially helpful for the beginner. It is also concise, so you should read the whole book once before starting any actual drills/exercises. Starts with how to psychologically approach sight reading. Basic components of sight reading are Pitch, Rhythm, and Fingering. After an excellent introduction to music notations, appropriate drills are given. Then the sight reading process is broken down into its component steps of visual, neural, muscular, and aural processes that start with the music score and end up as music. This is followed by drills for learning “keyboard orientation” (finding the notes without looking at the keyboard) and “visual perception” (instantly recognizing what to play). Depending on the person, it may take from 3 months to 4 years to learn; should practice every day. Finally, about one page of ideas on advanced sight reading. A MUST READ.”
—Chuan C. Chang, Fundamentals of Piano Practice
“I have started to practice the method and the first results are fantastic!”
—Marcel Hochman, Le Vesinet, France
“What piano player doesn’t want to have a superhuman sight-reading ability? If Super Sight-Reading Secrets suddenly landed on your doorstep, your dream might just have come true. Full of inspiring and valuable tips, this book makes a refreshing change from the many monotonous teach-yourself sight-reading books.”
—Pianist Magazine (UK), April/May, 2003
“Howard, I just received your book. All I can say is ‘Wow!’” Extremely well-organized, very easy to understand and very professional. It was way more than I had expected. I plan to study it closely and then begin to work with it.
“Boy, I wish I had this book years ago. I’d have a different career now. I’ve always been reading challenged. I’ve always wanted to play/read better. I’ve tried and tried everything to improve my reading with no luck. I found your book and have been working on sight reading drills and for the first time in my life I have hope. I think I may be able to crack this nut which has been plaguing me my entire life. I believe in a few weeks I’ll have improved more than I have in the last 30 years!”
“First of all I want to say thank you for SUPER SIGHT-READING SECRETS. I’m 46 years old and have played piano ‘by ear’ and from chords since my mid-twenties. Two years ago I made a new year’s resolution to learn to sight read and bought your book. Astonishingly, it still seems to be the only book of its type out there. I’ve diligently worked away (almost) every day, and my sight-reading really is coming on a treat.”
—Mark Robertson, UK
“Richman has gone a long way toward de-mythologizing the process of sight-reading. Highly recommended”
—American Music Teacher Magazine, September/October, 1988
“Your materials are making my journey back much quicker than I expected.”
Anthropology (Retired), SDSU,
San Diego, CA
“All pianists can benefit and some will experience the transformation into 1st-class sight-readers — something they may have thought was an impossibility.”
—Leonid Hambro, Concert Pianist/Teacher, New York
“I want to tell you how thrilled I am to have discovered, quite by accident, your wonderful book on Sight Reading. I studied at Mannes College of Music years ago, verred away from the piano for a while, came back to it later, and began to play chamber music with friends as an enthusiastic amateur. My biggest problem, however, was that I was a shockingly bad sight reader. I felt there must be some way to ‘learn’ to sight read, but all the good readers could ever say was ‘Just do it. The more you read, the better you’ll get.’ Frustrating advice, and not very helpful… also, not very true. Your book is excellent. It’s logical, well-organised and makes intuitive sense. I can feel the progress. Wonderful.”
—Michele Witt, London, UK
“His ingenious exercises cannot fail to help people become better sight-readers.”
—The California Music Teacher, Vol 10, Number 2
“It presents a series of progressive drills that help all keyboard musicians overcome their weaknesses and develop into better sight-readers.”
—Piano Guild Notes, Vol 36, Number 2
“The drills and lessons are well thought out, and sincere application of the material he presents will improve a pianist’s sight-reading ability. …his enthusiastic encouragment to all struggling sight-readers keep this method from being dry and tedious.”
—Clavier Magazine, July/August 1989
“You certainly approach a daunting subject with simple and direct advice. This straightforwardness gives one confidence. It seems so logical the way you structure it. Well done.”
“A pianist’s main asset is to be a good reader. This book will be an invaluable asset toward that goal.”
“It is elegantly simple yet comprehensive.”
—Todd Winkler, Professor of Music Theory and Solfege,
California Institute of the Arts
“I’ve used it in the studio, on tour, and in playing classical music.”
—Vonda Shepard, Recording Artist,
Singer/Songwriter on Ally McBeal
“By breaking down into manageable units the subject that I have spent most of my professional life avoiding, I am feeling a sense of accomplishmet unparalleled in my musical career.”
—Sam Glaser, Keyboardist/Composer, Los Angeles, CA
“Richman’s Super Sight-Reading Secrets has served as the basis of my beginning work on the piano and the technique has me playing intermediate to advanced piano music in six months … a complete system.”
—Steve Giles, Beginning Piano Student
“This book is absolutely amazing, it’s ‘all’ here but does take some ferreting out to put the exercises into practice. My piano teacher suggested that it might be best kept as ‘our’ secret and let others guess how I am making (such) rapid progress.”
“I bought a copy of your book and I really appreciate it. The small set of exercises are more encouraging and fun to practice than all the other drills I have seen.”
—Jörn Gehring, Bielefeld, Germany
“I am a beginning piano student. I consider this book to be just too good because of the following reasons:
1. It splits the topic into small chunks, each chunk being easy enough to be doable, yet difficult enough to teach something new. So a spirit of ‘Oh, I must be able to do it’ prevails throughout.
2. It outlines a very rigourous practice schedule. I have seen books on arts where the authors vaguely say that ‘go on
practising until you become perfect.’ But they seldom give specific guidelines as to how one should do the practice. But
this book is not like those. Every time I practise I have a feeling that I have done my day’s lesson satisfactorily, because the book is very clear about where each lesson starts and ends.
3. I came across the book while searching the internet for book that would teach me sight reading. When I found the book I was a little turned off by the book’s title. Typically, or so I think, the books with titles like ‘super secrets of …’ tend to be a collection of tricks to produce some shallow, eye-catching effects without going deeply into the subject. However, I was pleasantly relieved to find that this book was not like that. It does introduce lots of practice technques, but never presents the techniques as substitutes for practice. Additional = There is one point that I find very nice about the writing style. The author seems to be able to predict my reactions very accurately. eg, in the ‘VP2 drill’ the author says that every time I goof up it must be that I am trying to skip one of the 4 steps. Well, that precisely turned out to be case. This and other such instances give me a feeling of practising right before the eyes of a human teacher. And that’s not a little effect for a book to produce!”
—Arnab Chakraborty, Graduate Student, Stanford University
“I have recently purchased your book Super Sight-Reading Secrets. I cannot seem to put this book down. I have been playing piano for 32 years, and am knocked out by the content — accurate to the point information, difficult, but yet simple in approach! OUTSTANDING!”
—Jimmy Baas, Assistant Choir Director/Accompanist
“Mr. Richman, you are a GOD! I purchased Super Sight-Reading Secrets just short of a year ago and, by adhering closely to its simple instructions, am making progress as a piano player I NEVER thought I ever possibly could!
At this point, I’m on the final stage of the major portion of your book. I play with both hands simultaneously, without looking, and following the rhythm. I estimate just another month or two and I will be playing up to tempo. Considering that I’m a full-time college student, hold a part-time job, and am involved in a million other things that keep my time occupied, I’m pretty proud! And, believe me, I owe it all to YOU! Although, I certainly recognize that this is just the beginning but, as you say, ‘you’ve done the dirty work’ — soon it will all be fun.
It’s funny… The public library must think I’m strange. I must have checked out and rechecked out their copy of the complete Bach Chorales over a hundred times. Recently, actually, I decided to just keep the dang book and pay for it as if I lost it.
What’s even funnier is, I have not told anyone I know about your book or my excessive practicing. So, I look forward to the day when I go visit my family and shock the daylights out of them with my new skill. They’ll think I must be a genius. (I’ll NEVER tell—they truly are ‘SECRETS.’)
The book is not for everyone though. It certainly requires a lot of patience, discipline, perseverance and self-motivation but it’s a heck lot less than most would need with a piano teacher I imagine.
For one, of course, you get a tremendous feeling of accomplishment when you master a step. And it’s always nice to know that mastery of the next one is only a short ways away. In other words, you don’t have the constant thought of ‘I’m not progressing at all and I never will’ I used to get when I took piano lessons briefly as a kid. You master all the notes names in two days and you go ‘WOW, I know all the notes names!’ After that, you’re ready to jump in and tackle the next mission.
Added to this, your encouraging and enthusiastic personality that radiates so clearly from the pages helps me keep the faith.
I’m glad I found your website. I’ve been wanting to thank you. Take care, and if you have any extra tips or words of encouragement feel free to send me an email!”
—Jay Ross, Student, New York University, New York
“Super Sight-Reading Secrets has not only improved my sight-reading of notes, but it also has helped me take care to read rhythms accurately instead of making ‘educated’ guesses. Your book sold me on the value of isolating the different aspects of playing the piano.”