New US ambassador Scott Brown invites Kiwis over for a beer

One of US President Donald Trump's first diplomatic appointments has arrived at his posting, which just happens to be Wellington.

Former Senator Scott Brown officially started his tenure as Ambassador to New Zealand on Wednesday, and he's not your typical diplomat.

The newly-minted US Ambassador is a self-taught musician and a self-made man, his journey to the top not always been a happy tune.

"We had nothing. I had no money, no job, no ability to pay for law school," he told Newshub.

By the time he was 18, he'd lived in 17 different houses and was abused by his numerous step-dads. He says he had to "rescue" his mother and sister.

He also rescued himself, finding work where he could - including a notorious naked photoshoot for Cosmopolitan magazine.

It's how he met his wife Gail. They have two daughters - one a famous country singer - and a dog named Gracie.

After a stint as Senator, he was cherrypicked by Mr Trump to represent the US abroad.

"[New Zealand] was my first choice. He gave me a list of countries and I said, 'This is the country I want to go to', and I could have chosen to go anywhere," he said.

"He wanted somebody here in this important part of the world because you know what's happening to China."

Mr Brown said he was also lured by New Zealand's beauty and its friendly people.

"You can't tell New Zealanders what to do, they're fiercely independent," he said.

Mr Brown and his wife have moved into the US residence in Lower Hutt and he doesn't want locals to be shy.

"We've always been very approachable. If you want to go grab a beer, great. If you want to come over for a visit, great."

He's also gracious in defeat, congratulating Team New Zealand on the America's Cup win.

"It's now New Zealand's Cup."