Trent Reznor, better known as Nine Inch Nails, has released an upcoming NIN song, The Hand that Feeds, on the internet as a GarageBand file. GarageBand is a multitrack audio recording program for the rest of us. "GarageBand lets you easily perform, record and create your own music. Whether you're an experienced or aspiring musician. Or just want to feel -- and sound -- like a rock star. ... And when all your tracks are in place, you can view them in full music notation and take advantage of new GarageBand features to enhance the tuning and timing of your recordings."
Check out the official NIN Blog to download the file. It is 70 MB and you'll need GarageBand to play it, so don't bother if you don't have the requisite hardware and software. NIN's next album, With Teeth, will be released on May 3, 2005.
Just a brief comment on this. This release is pioneering stuff, breaking down, somewhat, the separation between artist and listener. I hope it will result in a wave of fan-generated music, sort of like fan fiction. And I hope that other artists will take notice, and make similar raw materials available for fans and artists alike.