Everything you need to know about crosspicking


When I do this, I’m supinated. The thumb heel (“thenar eminence”) is pretty fat. It sits taller than the pinky heel (“hypothenar eminence”). When I rest these two spots on the strings, the forearm bones are tilted. This is similar to the way Mike Stern does downward pickslanting.

Granted, this is not a huge amount of supination. It’s probably the practical minimum. But that was sort of the point of this little experiment, i.e. to show you how to do a very flat movement that’s almost entirely deviation.

When you work on this, a sloppy strum that approximates the shape of the movement would actually be more correct in terms of feel than trying to hit each not super accurately via stringhopping. So don’t be afraid to just wing it.

Filming also helps to see if you’re really making the movement.


Indeed … but finally that one is a roll pattern in its own right… Let’s call it the ‘Skip Inside’ roll :smiley:

3333 gives it more ‘pulse’ - which is what I miss from the forward roll. hmm … I should practice that stuff more.


This kind of struggle when coming from a Down-pick to a Up-pick like in the examples above reminds me of the way Steve Morse plays the Child in Time Arpeggio.
It was too hard for me when I was trying to figure out the “flamingo grip” and Crosspicking, but now I think it worth putting a few hours in this kind of “puzzle”.


What we were referencing with that isn’t really a grip, it was a totally different movement. It’s just what happens when you use a highly supinated forearm approach to crosspicking. The movement becomes mostly flexion/extension, with a small amount of deviation thrown in on the upstroke. In terms of appearances, it “looks” like the wrist flexing and extending.

What we’re outlining here is a different movement entirely. The arm is much more pronated in setup that what Steve does. This makes deviation the full range of motion movement, and flexion/extension are reduced to being Santa’s helpers.

I know this stuff is complicated so apologies for the bumpy journey! We’ll get this all ironed out with clear tutorial type stuff eventually.


I really enjoy watching, reading and learning about Crosspicking, but to be honest I don’t really know if I really achieve it or not, If I’m Crossing or Hopping. Still very complicated, so I’m focusing in DWPS and TWPS for now. I know that one day will be out a “Crosspicking Blueprint” and there we will learn the methods and unlock this door.

For now I just sometimes try the morse way, probably because was the first I tried and gave me a few results. Anyway keep on rockin!


Same here, I’ve been trying crosspicking over the last two months (at least) and more intensively for like a week or longer.
I’ve been trying both an “exactly replicating the instructions from the various threads and videos” approach, and a “just wing it” approach. I should probably give it a break because I have sore areas around my wrist now.


If we ever get that Crosspicking Seminar, I personally think that it would be wise to spend a good amount of time comparing it to 2WPS as well, just because the techniques do tend to overlap.

I’m personally still getting used to 1WPS, mostly DWPS and am trying to record some examples for critique here.


I’ve been practicing that stuff lately (though not specifically the forward roll as in the OP clip.

There’s been major improvement … and something tells me I’m on the right track : no pain, no tension, 4 strings arpeggios glides almost like sweeping. This CAN’T be wrong :slight_smile:

The real issue I have in practicing rolls is that my ears/head gets tired quickly because of the strings keep on ringing, even with unplugged electric - and I don’t feel I dig that much when picking. Mind you that is a real (and unexpected) issue for me, it makes me dizzy. But the wrist, arm … absolutely no sign of fatigue.

Another issue is tone control at higher speed. I’m not sure on that but … I’m thinking you have to practice at low speed with a VERY light touch, because when the motion gets faster, there’s more energy put as the strings are never put to a rest as long as you are ‘rolling’ :slight_smile: I would be interested to have feedback on this specific point.


Yeah that seems to be the hardest part for me too.
What works best for me at the moment (which means I’m not sure if it’s the best way to do it) is reduced string displacement, still the pick hits the string pretty deep but on higher speeds it’s more gliding than hitting. The range of control is pretty big, but it’s hard to get it nailed.


Then UWPS single string crosspicking should be:
Starting wih the pick buried between two strings,playing the downstroke the pick will escape the plane of the strings,(wrist deviation)
from the highest point try to pick the same string upstroke by wrist deviation extending the wrist as soon as you hit it,
from there try to bury the pick again between the same two strings flexing the wrist while preserving the uwps and then deviation again once you get under the string
Once you get it you can switch strings as dwps
Am i wrong ?
(I think i play this way usually)