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Welcome back to the Neuroscience Meets Social and Emotional Learning Podcast for episode #149 with Dave Farrow[i], a two-time Canadian Guinness World Record Holder for Most Decks of Playing Cards Memorized in a single sighting in 1996 and again in 2007 when he correctly memorized and recalled the exact order of 59 decks of shuffled playing cards—which is 3068 cards in total, exceeding his previous record of 52 decks (2704 cards).

Watch the Interview on YouTube here. 

Learn more about Dave Farrow and his Memory Program

See past episodes here

I’m Andrea Samadi, author, and educator from Toronto, Canada, now in Arizona, and like many of our listeners, have been fascinated with learning and understanding the science behind high performance strategies in our schools, sports, and the workplace with ideas that we can all use, understand and implement immediately.

I can’t tell you how excited I am to speak with fellow Canadian, Dave Farrow[ii] who wasn’t born with the gift of memory, he was diagnosed with ADHD and dyslexia as a child. To help him to do better at school, Dave created a memory system called “The Farrow Method” which is now a certifiable scientifically proven system for memory backed by a double-blind neuroscience study at McGill University

In 2008 Dave was hired by Sony Corporation to live in a window on 5th Avenue in Manhattan and speed read on a Sony E-Reader for literacy in America. In 30 days, he read over 100 books and through his efforts, Sony gave 4.4 million E-Books to schools in America. Over 100 million people watched him in the window read for charity. As a memory expert, David has trained over 10,000 business professionals, students, managers and seminar attendees in memory programs offered in both Canada and the United States, with that number growing each day.

Today Dave uses his media savvy and keen understanding of the brain in the public relations sector. He is the founder and CEO of FarrowPR a full-service public relations and marketing firm in Buffalo NY. With his ability to speed read and memorize large amounts of information, Dave is an expert in Nanotechnology and microfluidics and is currently developing a prototype for a robotic moving mannequin with “Start Up New York.” Dave has been a featured guest expert on over 2000 interviews in the media including, The Today Show, Live with Regis and Kelly, Steve Harvey, Discovery Channel and many others.

I was introduced to Dave Farrow after episode #145 with Howard Berg[iii] who holds the Guinness World record for speed reading, and immediately started to make connections with his work, and past interviews and episodes. I’m always looking at ways to improve memory, especially after my brain scan at Amen Clinics[iv] showed that I was weak in the area of recall memory or recalling a list of random words and Dr. Creado who did my brain scan evaluation reminded me that “we can change our brain and memory with practice, but we must first of all believe it’s possible.” After seeing how easy it was to remember a list of 10 items with my interview with Howard Berg, I’m dying to learn more from Dave Farrow, and share these strategies with you.

Welcome Dave, thank you very much for meeting with me today. I see that you are originally from Kitchener, Ontario? Growing up in Toronto, I spent a lot of time in Kitchener in high school when a high school friend moved off the Homer Watson Blvd exit (I still remember that!). Where have I reached you today?

Q1: From reading your story, I can see how you got behind with your academics with the health challenges you experienced. Your story reminded me a lot of someone I interviewed years ago, named Nik Halik[v] from EPISODE #31 who overcame severe illness as a child, by studying Encyclopedias and went on to live a phenomenal life. What do you remember about your early years that motivated you to learn, study and begin developing the talents that would set you miles apart from others in your future?

Q2: Dave, a lot about your story is fascinating, but for those who work with students with dyslexia, or reading challenges, they might find it difficult to imagine results like yours. I interviewed Lois Letchford on episode #136 where her son, who was diagnosed with dyslexia in first grade, went on to get his Ph.D. and graduate from Oxford University, with a bright future. His Mom spoke about the switch she felt with his learning when he began to find an interest in learning through maps. Also, Barbara Arrowsmith-Young from episode #132[vi] who changed her brain and left her learning disability behind. Was there something that you remember that changed for you that took you from struggling with your academics, to mastery?

Q3: Can we talk about what got you into the Guinness World Book of Records for memory?

“There is nothing more empowering or motivational than discovering the ability for SuperHuman Memory has been inside you all along.”

– Dave Farrow

I watched you on the FOX TV SUPERHUMAN SHOW[vii] where you were being tested by memorizing 109 balloon colors, (in 60 seconds) (and then I thought “What strategy does he use to do this as you close your eyes?” How on the earth could you memorize 59 decks of shuffled cards when I struggle to remember 10 things on a random list? Is there a secret?

Q4: Looking through your work this weekend, I couldn’t miss seeing Harry Lorayne[viii] somewhere, and I don’t remember where it was, maybe it was a reference on your website. When I worked with Bob Proctor in the seminar industry, he was always talking about Harry Lorayne being the person he knew with a great memory (maybe because he hadn’t met you yet)? Was Harry one of your early influencers? Who else inspired the work you are doing?

Q5: I can also see some of the leaders of motivation and sales on your website who I’ve come across over the years. I saw Greg Reid, the creator of Secret Knock, who’s written so many books on the power of positive thinking and developing your mind, and also the late Frank Shankwitz, the Founder of Make-A-Wish Foundation, who we interviewed on episode #40 and sadly we lost earlier this year.[ix] How are you now using your talents to help others to be more successful?

Q6: What is the Farrow Method™[x] that was proven at McGill University’s neuroscience study and how does it guarantee to improve someone’s memory? How can The Farrow Method  help sales teams, high powered executives, or anyone else looking to improve their productivity and results?

Q7: Is there something important, that you think I have missed?

Thank you for your time today, Dave, and for all you are doing to help lift up those who may think they don’t have a chance for mind-blowing results that you have attained.

For those who want to learn more about you and your programs, I will put the link in the show notes as well, they can find you on




The Gift of Dyslexia: Why Some of the Smartest People Can’t Read by Ronald D. Davis Published Feb.4th 2010

Educational Implications of the Theory of Multiple Intelligences First Published Nov. 1st, 1989 by Howard Gardner




[iii] Neuroscience Meets Social and Emotional Learning Podcast EPISODE #145 with the World’s Fastest Reader, Howard Berg on “Strategies to Improve Reading, Comprehension and Recall”

[iv] Neuroscience Meets Social and Emotional Learning Podcast EPISODE #84 Brain Scan Results “How a SPECT Image Brain Scan Can Change Your Life”

[v] Neuroscience Meets Social and Emotional Learning Podcast EPISODE #31

[vi] Neuroscience Meets Social and Emotional Learning Podcast EPISODE #132 with Barbara Arrowsmith Young on “How She Changed Her Brain and Left Her Learning Disability Behind”

[vii] Dave Must Memorize 109 Balloon Colors Published on YouTube June 10, 2017 by FOX NEWS


[ix]Neuroscience Meets Social and Emotional Learning Podcast EPISODE #40 with Frank Shankowitz