I would probably spend it on something boring and practical, like my student loans. But Florida teen Thomas Mrzyglocki found a much more fun way to get rid of $20,000–he bought a limited edition album from Josh Freese, a drummer who has worked with Nine Inch Nails, among other bands.
$20,000 for an album? It seems a bit much. But this package included flying out to meet Freese, playing mini-golf with other rock stars, time in a sensory-deprivation tank, and having 2 songs written about him by Freese (and more). It was one of several options that Freese offered on his website, for people who didn’t want to just spend $7 on a digital download. You can read about all the options here. (They are pretty crazy.)
There are, of course, easier and cheaper ways to find music to listen to. Ideally, you’ll be able to get the artists some cash recognition while also expanding your musical horizons. I find that the library is a great place where you can get music to try out, and if you like it, you’ll buy or download the cd. Not only does the library have a wide-ranging, awesome music collection (not to mention music magazines and music scores), we also have streaming music databases, a collection of links to excellent music sites, and a Teen Music Discussion group.
But if you really want more more more music information, you can sign up for Earplug, a bi-weekly email newsletter that collects music reviews, intereviews, and links from all over. You could explore the Free Music Archive, a new venture from online/Jersey City radio station WFMU that aims to become “an interactive library of high-quality, legal audio downloads”. They are offered under Creative Commons licenses. (A similarly-intentioned archive is at the Internet Archive.)