Focusing on a diverse and eclectic scene that is under-documented, this book investigates the historical, social, and cultural aspects of jazz and improvised music in Vienna over the last four decades. One of the most striking aspects of the entire scene is the near-absence of a racialized discourse among musicians and critics and of stereotypical markers of "blackness" in performance. Moreover, the absence of an African-descendent population in Austria, due to the country’s near-lack of a colonial history, distinguishes it from the U.S.’s jazz context. Austria’s jazz scene had no need to resist a U.S.-model of jazz performance practice, while other jazz scenes in Europe and around the world struggled to "be free of America." Therefore, the construction of jazz and improvised music in Vienna is better seen as a process of cultural layering. These and other aspects of Vienna's scene are examined in recordings by Mathias Rüegg, Franz Koglmann, Wolfgang Mitterer, Clemens Salesny, Franz Hautzinger, and ctrl.