Mr. Karr, Would You Teach Me How to Drive a Double Bass?
second Edition

Mr. Karr, Would You Teach Me How to Drive a Double Bass?

by Michael Klinghoffer

The idea to write the book came to Author when he was at Karr camp in 2006.          

One day, in his master class, Maestro Karr tried to explain something to a student. He tried a few times but it didn't really work. Finally, he took the student's bass and bow and started playing. He was not explaining or demonstrating. He played the entire movement.  It was like a prayer or a similar experience. Author felt a tear rolling down.

From the very first time, Author heard Gary Karr in concert his life has changed. Studying for four years with Gary Karr changed Author’s views about playing, about music and about teaching.

Moreover, the time Author spent with Gary Karr inspired Author and gave him the strength to follow his beliefs and listen to his heart even when he is sailing against the wind.

There was something so unique, almost mystical about that moment at Karr camp, that Author decided he had to write this book so that more people knew about Gary Karr's special technique and musicality. Since the book and the videos were released, Author has learned that there is a continuous interest in Gary Karr and his legendary contribution to the world of music.

This book is Author’s little tribute to this great man and Author hopes it would help some people in their quest of finding their own voice.


Michael Klinghoffer is the author of “Mr. Karr, Would You Teach Me How to Drive a Double Bass?” a book devoted to the technique and philosophy of his mentor, Maestro Gary Karr. His repertoire ranges from Israeli music (much of it composed for him) to his own transcriptions that have been published and recorded on three compact disks.

Michael is the conductor of the Conservatory Orchestra at JAMD, a young orchestra, dedicated to bring music to communities that would not have it otherwise and to playing new works and creative projects alongside the standard symphonic repertoire.

Michael cherishes the things in life that he can not assign a number to, such as values, meaning, creativity and watching the sunrise from his garden. As a teacher he believes that teaching is an ART and that the most important role of a teacher is to CONFUSE his students.

Michael loves reading, (he only reads books that he has read before...), and he is a great chess partner (he always looses). He is addicted to running, chocolate and espresso. Michael is married to Varda (for the past 30 years), and they are the proud parents of Allon, Nurit, and Yuval. Other members of the family are two cats and one dog.

Along with his academic commitments and performing engagements, Michael devotes much time and energy to working with young people of diverse backgrounds all over Israel and abroad.

© Copyright by Michael Klinghoffer

Introduction. Mr. Karr, Would You Teach Me How to Drive a Double Bass?
Introduction.1 - Acknowledgments
Introduction.2 - Preface by Gary Karr
Introduction.3 - Introduction
Chapter One. Neutral Gear
Chapter Two. Swing Low Sweet Chariot
Chapter Three. The Sound of the Pendulum
Chapter Four. Shifting Gears
Chapter Five. Road Maps
Chapter Six. Slalom Driving
Chapter Seven. Crossing Safely
Chapter Eight. Shock absorbers
Chapter Nine. Radar Detectors
Chapter Ten. The Timing Belt
Chapter Eleven. Cruise Control
Chapter Twelve. “Ten books to a desert island” - Selected Bibliography
Chapter Thirteen. Appendix I - Scales with fingerings by Gary Karr
Chapter Fourteen. Appendix II - Excellence in the Age of Ratings
Chapter Fifteen. The Author