crosspicking Part 1 : The basics.
Crosspicking is a wonderful technique which, once you've mastered it to full extend, will enable you to play multiple lines using just a single flatpick. Part of this lesson is based around primary exercises I've learned during Guitar Craft courses.
The fundamentals :
In the following examples we'll be using alternate picking strictly, meaning every downstroke is followed by an upstroke except when playing quarter notes, which are all downstrokes. The aim is to establish a smooth motion of the wrist with minimal movement. Once we have established this the elbow functions as a hinge to chance from one string to another without altering the position of the hand in relation to the wrist, enabling you to use the exact same picking motion on every string.
Accuracy is the key here, so don't practice these exercises too fast. To master this technique patience is required. Be sure to practice with a metronome.
Here are the primary exercises :
Using the right pick.
Though there is no right or wrong in this and what kind of pick you use is in part based on personal preference, I find that some picks work better than others for this kind of playing. Overall I prefer triangular picks that are pointy rather than having round edges, because the less material touches the strings the less friction you get, and the lighter you're able to play. The stiffness and hardness of the material also plays a part in this. The aim is to choose a pick that has minimal friction, sounds good and allows you to play very accurate.
Over the years I've tried several picks, but always come back to the Guitar Craft pick. The Fender 355 triangular pick is also a nice pick, but it's much bigger. I find that the larger size gives it a good leverage, which makes it less tiering on the hand, but I'm able to play faster and with more attack using a smaller pick.
An alternative to the GC pick is the V-pick Shredder Ultra light, which is hard, super pointy and gives you a great tone, but it's not as dynamic as the GC pick which as far as I know is not commercially available..
(From left to right, a Derlin pick, the Guitar Craft pick, the V-pick Shredder Ultra light and the Fender 355 triangular pick.)