This book gives a tremendous amount of insight on the subject of making a "remix," from defining what a remix might be, to the genres the results may fit, to the gathering of materials and creating new content, the (software) tools of the trade, the major phases and steps within them, to even insight into the business aspects of doing this for a living.
As a consumer of all kinds of music for a few decades, and as someone who occasionally enjoys meddling with the music, I had hoped that the book would help me take the leap and get into this more deeply. The problem is, I am not a professional, and I don't have the time and money to put into this work that I think would be required to take advantage of the book; I am a hobbyist. I am no stranger to technology, yet I was impressed with just how technical this book is.
So who is the book for? Certainly it helps to have an understanding of the structure of melody and rhythm the way a musician does. Knowing your way around synth equipment (hardware, software, or both) will be essential if you are creating new music to go with your creation. Being familiar with a music studio, mixing boards, and correction is part of it. And if you already have Apple Logic 9, you're probably the target audience.
Though the book description says the audience includes those starting to remix tracks, I have to disagree with that point: this is definitely NOT a beginner's guide. Beginners can buy it, read it, scratch their head, try things out, read again, and perhaps eventually understand what he's talking about.
Plenty of in-depth information to solve a variety of problems that you will encounter in creative remixing
Insight into the business of remixing, the history of remixes, genres, etc
Discusses several software packages
The author seems very knowledgeable and experienced, knows what he's talking about
Assumption that you are doing this on the Mac, and using Apple Logic; no discussion of equivalent software for PCs or Linux, perhaps because there isn't much for those platforms.
A wide gap between very basic information and jumping into complex discussions, with terms that are not explained
Focus is more on creating an alternate music track and fitting samples to it, compared to creating a new mix that is based mainly on original elements but in an altered arrangement, the kind of remix I prefer.
SECTION 1 has 8 chapters on The Art of Remixing. History, being a remixer, choosing a style, music structure, arrangements, and anatomy of a remix. I got a much better feel for the types of remixes, the role of the DJ, and the strategy of getting your music played. All was pretty understandable until suddenly in Chapter 5 (Tempo, Groove, and Feel) he dove deeply into "Note Quantization" without explaining exactly what it meant. This discussion feels like it belongs in SECTION 2 (see below).
As I was reading SECTION 1, I was thinking: wouldn't it be great if he were to give examples of actual remixes and explain it in terms of them? And that's when I got to Chapter 7, in which he considers two case studies in detail.
SECTION 2 dives deeply into The Science of Remixing, with a lot of technical description of actual procedures. How you might build up new instrumentation, and how you might take your samples and stretch to fit your desired tempo.
SECTION 3 is The Reality of Remixing, with a walkthrough of the steps involved, in detail.
SECTION 4 is The Business of Remixing, something you'll need to deal with if you are trying to make this a career.
Overall I think this book will be especially valuable to someone who is going deeply into the art and science of remixing with the aim of having it as a career; the book is like visiting an expert for a few days and having him talk you through a lot of what he does. But even for a sound geek who loves music but is not as deep into all the subject required to do this as a career, it is a very interesting read and bound to teach you something about modern music production, especially Section 1.
I consider this an imperfect, uneven book, but I can only give it five stars, because for its minor flaws, there's really nothing much else out there that tells you so much.