Mu­sic is food to fill life’s hunger

Southern Gazette (South Perth) - - News - Lau­ren Pi­lat

DE­SPITE hav­ing been home­less, con­stantly in transit and al­most dy­ing from a head in­jury, Ella Munro (20) con­sid­ers her­self lucky.

The for­mer Cyril Jack­son stu­dent shared her story mark­ing the launch of the 6PR and Com­mu­nity News­pa­per Group an­nual Sox ‘n’ Jox col­lec­tion.

Ms Munro has lived in count­less dif­fer­ent houses and lo­ca­tions but now calls Foyer Ox­ford in Leed­erville home and knows all too well the strug­gles of liv­ing with­out ba­sic essen­tials.

Grow­ing up with lit­tle money and hav­ing to live in a tent in Mt He­lena as a teenager, Ms Munro said it was of­ten dif­fi­cult to get the ba­sics.

“We didn’t have any­thing to cook food with or a fridge,” she said.

“I’d wake up at about 5am or I wouldn’t sleep at all and I’d walk half an hour, which was a lot of ef­fort es­pe­cially when there wasn’t enough food.

“I would get on the bus and I would make my way to Leed­erville Tafe.” Ms Munro said it was tough liv­ing with­out food to fuel her brain and she would some­times eat barely any­thing ex­cept in­stant noo­dles all day or not at all.

She called this her “home­less diet” and ad­mit­ted she of­ten fell back into the habit.

Ms Munro got a guitar on her sixth birth­day, and turned to mu­sic to ex­press the strug­gles of home­less­ness, in­clud­ing the lack of food, in her emo­tion­ally charged orig­i­nal track

Bumpers and Goon­bags.

The song is one of many she has writ­ten over the years and said one of her most re­cent tracks told the story of her life-threat­en­ing skate­board ac­ci­dent when she was 16.

Ms Munro said she skated down a mas­sive hill near Great Eastern High­way and stacked it.

“I broke my col­lar bone, I have scars on my knuck­les, I frac­tured both sides of my head and I had two haem­or­rhages,” she said.

“I was in an in­duced coma for two weeks and in hos­pi­tal for a year and an in-pa­tient for six months.

“All of a sud­den my life was gone and I was try­ing to grasp at any­thing be­cause I couldn’t re­mem­ber things.”

Ms Munro said when her mum brought her guitar into the hos­pi­tal, she felt whole.

“It was another piece of me that I could grasp,” she said.

“When I don’t play, my whole body shuts down, it’s some­thing that keeps me alive. Like air to breathe and wa­ter to drink, mu­sic be­came some­thing like that.”

Study­ing a Cer­tifi­cate IV in mu­sic and pho­tog­ra­phy, Ms Munro is look­ing for a job be­fore reach­ing her dream of be­com­ing a paid mu­si­cian and pho­tog­ra­pher.

Pic­ture: Will Rus­sell d440366

Ella Munro knows too well life’s strug­gles.

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