In the past year or two, we've heard a lot of sound and fury about music on the Internet. The prospect of using the Internet to retrieve music directly has quickly become a reality - obviously for consumers, but also for musicians who can bypass conventional distribution channels and put their music directly into the consumer's hands, and for the commercial music industry, which sees a threat to their stranglehold on distribution. Clearly, "The Internet Changes Everything."
The MP3 and Internet Audio Handbook is a well-written snapshot of the fast-changing world of formats, software, web sites and, yes, even legal issues. Parts 1 and 2 cover a variety of topics aimed primarily at consumers, including an overview of formats, hardware and software (not platform-specific), the various distribution mechanisms and, perhaps most importantly, issues related to copyright law. Parts 3 and 4 are directed at those involved in the creation of digital music - recording music on your computer, creating sound files from existing CDs or your own sources, making your own CDs and distributing your music. Finally, Part 5 provides a set of detailed tutorials on topics like installing and using particular (Windows-related) software.
All in all, The MP3 and Internet Audio Handbook does an admirable job of summarizing the current state of digital music on the Internet. Things change quickly out there, but if you're curious about how your band can make use of the Internet for getting your music to the buying public, this book is a good place to start.