If you don't already have leopard, I don't think you can get snow leopard for $29. I'm assuming you have an intel mac.
The cheapest really is ram.
Here are some utilities, Vox looks cool.
Ripping / Transcoding
X Lossless Decoder (XLD)
X Lossless Decoder (XLD) is a tool for Mac OS X that is able to decode/convert/play various 'lossless' audio files. The supported audio files can be split into tracks with a cue sheet when decoding. XLD is What.CD's recommended CD ripping software for Mac OS X.
XLD supports the following formats:
Max is an application for creating high-quality audio files in various formats, from compact discs or files.
When extracting audio from compact discs, Max offers the maximum in flexibility to ensure the true sound of your CD is faithfully extracted. For pristine discs, Max offers a high-speed ripper with no error correction. For damaged discs, Max can either use its built-in comparison ripper (for drives that cache audio) or the error-correcting power of cdparanoia.
Once the audio is extracted, Max can generate audio in over 20 compressed and uncompressed formats including MP3, Ogg Vorbis, FLAC, AAC, Apple Lossless, Monkey's Audio, WavPack, Speex, AIFF, and WAVE.
Spectral Analysis / File Analysis
Audacity is a digital audio editor and recording application. Audacity is cross-platform and is available for Windows, Mac OS X, Linux and BSD.
Some of Audacity's features include:
Importing and exporting WAV, AIFF, MP3 (via the LAME encoder, downloaded separately), Ogg Vorbis, all file formats supported by libsndfile library
Version 1.3.2 also supports Free Lossless Audio Codec (FLAC)
Recording and playing sounds
Editing via Cut, Copy, Paste (with unlimited Undo)
A large array of digital effects and plug-ins. Additional effects can be written with Nyquist
Amplitude envelope editing
Support for multi-channel modes with sampling rates up to 96 kHz with 24 bits per sample
The ability to make precise adjustments to the audio's speed while maintaining pitch (Audacity calls it changing tempo), in order to synchronize it with video, run for the right length of time, etc.
The ability to change the audio's pitch without changing the speed.
Contains major features of modern multi-track audio software  including navigation controls, zoom and single track edit, project pane and XY project navigation, non-destructive and destructive effect processing, audio file manipulation (cut, copy, paste)
Converting cassette tapes or records into digital tracks by automatically splitting one wav (or the other supported types) track into multiple tracks based on silences in the track and the export multiple option.
MediaInfo supplies technical and tag information about a video or audio file.
It is free software (free of charge and free access to source code: GPL or LGPL license).
What information can I get from MediaInfo?
General: title, author, director, album, track number, date, duration...
Video: codec, aspect, fps, bitrate...
Audio: codec, sample rate, channels, language, bitrate...
Text: language of subtitle
Chapters: number of chapters, list of chapters
What format (container) does MediaInfo support?
Video: MKV, OGM, AVI, DivX, WMV, QuickTime, Real, MPEG-1, MPEG-2, MPEG-4, DVD (VOB)...
Codecs: DivX, XviD, MSMPEG4, ASP, H.264, AVC...)
Audio: OGG, MP3, WAV, RA, AC3, DTS, AAC, M4A, AU, AIFF...
Subtitles: SRT, SSA, ASS, SAMI...
Songbird is a free and open source software audio player and web browser founded by Rob Lord and developed by Pioneers of the Inevitable (with members who previously developed for both Winamp and the Yahoo! Music Engine), with a stated mission "to incubate Songbird, the first Web player, to catalyze and champion a diverse, open Media Web."
Songbird employs Mozilla's XULRunner platform, and is thus capable of running on Microsoft Windows, Apple Mac OS X, Solaris and Linux. Songbird utilizes the GStreamer media framework. Apple iPhones, iPod Touch and Microsoft Zune devices are not yet supported.
Vox is a little and simple music player for Mac OS X with support for many file types, including FLAC, MP3, AAC, Musepack, Monkey's Audio, OGG Vorbis, Apple Lossless, AIFF, WAV, IT, MOD, XM, Games Music and many others. Includes numerous effects like Equalizer, Reverb, Time Stretch, Pitch Shift, Echo. Moreover, all supported files can be exported to MP3, AAC, WAV and other formats with enabled effects.
VLC Media Player
VLC media player is a highly portable multimedia player and multimedia framework capable of reading most audio and video formats (MPEG-2, MPEG-4, H.264, DivX, MPEG-1, mp3, ogg, aac ...) as well as DVDs, Audio CDs VCDs, and various streaming protocols.
Tagging / File Management
Tag is a metadata editor for FLAC, Ogg Vorbis, Monkey's Audio and WavPack files.
Tag has an intuitive interface that simplifies common editing tasks while also allowing direct manipulation of tags. Tags can be dragged between files, or Tag can even add all the tags contained in one file to another in one fell swoop.
For files with incomplete or missing metadata, Tag can guess tag values by matching the filename to a user-defined pattern. Alternatively, Tag can rename files by substituting tag values into a user-defined pattern.
Need to make many parallel changes? No problem! Tag can edit multiple files simultaneously, eliminating repetition and saving time.
For advanced users Tag features customizable mappings that allow you to specify which tags are mapped to the various fields in the user interface.
Picard is the next generation MusicBrainz tagging application. This new tagging concept is album oriented, as opposed to track/file oriented like the ClassicTagger. Picard is written in Python, which is a cross-platform language, and makes use of cross-platform libraries - this allows the same code to run both on Windows, Linux and Mac OS X.
Dnuos is a console program that creates lists of music collections, based on directory structure.
The list format is completely customizable and can be plain text or HTML.
Dnuos supports MP3, AAC, Musepack, Ogg Vorbis, and FLAC audio files. Quality profile detection is also supported, including LAME quality preset information.
Audio file information is saved to disk after a list is made for the first time, making subsequent lists much faster to generate. Only audio files and directories that have been changed since the last list was made are analyzed.
See wiki.php?action=article&id=61 for information on using Dnuos.
Internet Relay Chat (IRC)
Traditionally, chat clients on the Mac have been anything but glamorous. Colloquy is an advanced IRC, SILC & ICB client which aims to fill this void. By adhering to Mac OS X interface conventions, Colloquy has the look and feel of a quality Mac application.
X-Chat Aqua is X-Chat with an Aqua interface for Mac OS X. X-Chat Aqua uses the IRC engine from X-Chat, and is designed to look and feel like the GTK+ front end.