While some countries offer legal protection against censorship, others do not. Even the nations that do afford these freedoms can require a fight to exercise them. Niko Kotoulas has a strong message for those who wish to block any type of creativity in music: it is futile to put limitations on art and creative expression.
This goes beyond a cultural plea as it can move into the field of being illegal. After all, artists and musicians have been jailed in numerous parts of the world for speaking their minds. Whether the censor boards feel the work is obscene or threatens civil unrest, Niko Kotoulas believes it is not about suppressing music; they are censoring human emotions.
Music is the ultimate vehicle for sharing creative expression; thus, it is deeply personal. Whether or not people seek to censor some music can be based solely on opinion and perception, which, as we all know, can vary tremendously. While some lyrics are relatively straightforward and can raise even the most jaded eyebrows, others can be grossly misinterpreted.
Niko Kotoulas feels that no matter how direct or suggestive music is, it should be censored after interpreting numerous angles. The same goes for any type of art, for that matter. As he says, if you don’t like it, you don’t have to look or listen, but do not impose your disapproval on others. Saying this to civilians is one thing, but swaying censor boards is another. His explanation is simple, “I’m not going to alter my work due to draconian laws.”
The repression of speech and creativity is akin to blocking a part of our existence. It is a tactic to control and silence a population, not just a portion of that population. Niko Kotoulas advocates letting the creative expression flow freely and fearlessly.