Singer John Rowles knighted

Kiwi singer John Rowles has been knighted in this year's Queen's Birthday Honours.

Sir John has performed around the world, scoring worldwide hits in the late '60s and early '70s.

In 1968, 'If I Only Had Time' reached no 3 in the British singles chart. In 1971, 'Cheryl Moana Marie' made it to no 64 of the US Billboard Top 100.

At home, he had number one hits with 'Cheryl Moana Marie' and 'Tania'.

Sir John can't believe it's been 50 years since he hit the big time.

"It makes me feel very proud, and my family, and it's something I'm going to hold on to with a lot of pride and self-esteem in the future."

He told Newshub his journey has been pretty good for a boy from Whakatane.

"I recall going from Kawerau to John Hope's private jet flying to New York within five years."

He says the key to his success is lots of energy.

"It's just self-indulgence, self-belief, confidence, and sheer determination. Never stopping and just going and going."

Speaking of his participation in the 2009 season of Dancing with the Stars NZ, Rowles said he "nearly died".

"It was a difficult show. I was 62 at the time and my partner was like, 22 and when she asked me to throw her over my shoulders and back again I went 'woah, this really is hard'. I enjoyed it, but I had a few ailments at the time."

Sir John danced in two episodes before withdrawing for medical reasons.


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