There's a new trend of music, of artists making an album that is legally free and available on the internet, as a compressed (.rar or .zip) file of mp3 tracks.
I believe this trend had already started, but was accelerated by the Jan 2007 arrest of the highest-selling mixtape DJ, DJ Drama
I hope this trend takes gains steam. What better way to sample new music than a free album on the internet? Thus far some "established" artists have made such albums. It's great opportunity for an artist to do a side project album without all the legal hassles & sample clearing that "regular" albums require. Many old rap albums from the early 90s & before sampled many legends like James Brown & Miles Davis - nowadays that's impossible due to strong sample laws. The free album makes any sampling or "mash ups" possible.
The free album trend might be even better for unheard of "myspace" artists. Such an artist already has 4 songs on myspace, so why not make an Illmatic length, 10 song, no filler album downloadable of your website or myspace. If it's really strong, at least a few of the folks will buy your "real album" or go to your concert.
Any of yall have some excellent "legally free albums" to recommend? If so, hit up the comments.