The koto ist the national instrument of Japan. The koto is a kind of a zither played with three fingers bearing finger picks. The koto has movable bridges for each string that can be used to change the tuning quickly. The left hand can press down the strings to change the pitch and create some special effects.
I have recently listened to some videos with traditional music for koto and groups of koto players, but also to some very interesting new music for koto. In this post I have selected some videos of traditional koto music and videos that show some details about how the koto is played.
伝統音楽デジタルライブラリー 箏演奏 「讃歌」
The following video shows a group with koto, violin and other instruments:
The following video is a demonstration of the different picking tchniques of the right hand on the koto. You can find three more instructive videos in the profile senzokuonline with information about the basics of the koto, the left hand techniques and a complete piece with animations.
伝統音楽デジタルライブラリー 箏 「右手の奏法」
Playlist Koto with many interesting videos of traditional Japanes koto music
The playlist starts with variations of the famous tune Sakura:
Pipa Xing: http://www.akiraifukube.org/pipa_xing.htm
Wikipedia about the koto: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Koto_%28musical_instrument%29