Real Life With John Cowan

Real Life With John Cowan

John Cowan hosts ‘Real Life’, a weekly nationwide chat show on Newstalk ZB featuring a different high-profile guest every week. John talks with them about their life, their upbringing, their passions and their view of the world.


December 3, 2023 24 mins

Dr Claire Achmad is an advocate for children, having worked in various areas relating to children's rights. She was appointed as the Deputy Chair of the Children and Young People's Commission in July 2023 and, from November 1st, took up the role of Chief Children's Commissioner and Chair of the Commission for a five-year term.

From 2021 to 2023, Claire served as Chief Executive Officer of Social Service Providers Te Pai Ora ...

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Shane Hales, known by the stage name Shane, grew up in Surrey, England, before moving to Australia and then New Zealand. He started his career in 1966 as a member of the Australian band The Pleazers before forming his own band, Shane. He became a regular singer on the television pop programme C'mon and was part of the C'mon 1968 national tour. His cover of Terry Knight's Saint Paul flew to the top of the charts an...

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November 19, 2023 22 mins

Dr Phil Bagshaw was an Associate Professor of Surgery at the University of Otago Christchurch until he retired in 2010. He practised as a specialist General Surgeon, did research and taught surgery. In 2007, he opened the Canterbury Charity Hospital for patients who can’t access public hospital care and can’t afford private care. He is chairman of the Trust that runs it and works as a volunteer.

Phil and his wife Dame Sue Ba...

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November 12, 2023 25 mins

Benedict is a political journalist working for 1News in the Wellington press gallery. He has a strong interest in covering anything to do with illicit drugs and enforcement. He's covered punitive drug-testing sanctions applied to beneficiaries, attempts to legalise pill-testing at festivals, the 2020 cannabis referendum, and, in 2018 helped expose a meth-testing scandal.

This month, Benedict's book Mad on Meth: ...

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November 5, 2023 24 mins

Craig is a former banker from Dunedin who started his music career in the late 1960s. After involvement with the bands Klap and Fantasy, Scott joined the band Revival who won a Battle of the Bands contest in May 1969. Their song Viva Bobby Joe which peaked at #14 on the related singles chart.

After leaving Revival, Craig released a series of commercially successful singles. Smiley reached #3 on the New Zealand pop chart, Sta...

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October 29, 2023 22 mins

Chris was born and raised in Lower Hutt and studied film and English literature at Victoria University of Wellington, where he also completed an MA in Creative Writing at the International Institute of Modern Letters.

Chris’ first full-length poetry collection, How to be Dead in a Year of Snakes, was published in 2014. In 2016, Snakes was a finalist in the poetry category at the Ockham New Zea...

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October 22, 2023 24 mins

Together with her husband Andy, who passed away suddenly in 2018, Nikki has been a Co-Founding Director of FamilyLife NZ, a Christian charitable trust. For 25 years, she has taught healthy relationship skills to couples across New Zealand. Nikki is also an accredited certified life coach, a neuro linguistic programming trainer and a lightning process practitioner.

Alongside Andy, Nikki co-authored a workbook called 

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October 15, 2023 23 mins

Robert Vennell is an ecologist and best-selling natural history author. His first book, The Meaning of Trees, was listed as one of the best non-fiction books of 2019 and was longlisted for an Ockham New Zealand Book Award. His second book, Secrets of the Sea, was selected as a finalist in the illustrated non-fiction category of the Ockham New Zealand Book Awards 2023. His latest – The Forgotte...

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October 8, 2023 23 mins

Born in Rotorua, Clint is co-host of ZM's drive show, Bree & Clint, with Bree Tomasel. Clint started working at The Edge in 2006. After filling in on the breakfast show at the end of 2013, he started co-hosting The Edge Afternoons with Guy, Sharyn & Clint and The Edge Fat 40 with Guy, Sharyn & Clint from 2014. In 2015, he hosted Hot Right Now on The Edge TV and co-hosted The Xtra Factor. He began co-hosting the breakfas...

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October 1, 2023 24 mins

Zennon walked out of school at 16 years old and talked himself into a job in a restaurant kitchen at Titirangi’s Barossa. After six months, he moved to Auckland's Euro restaurant, then helmed by Simon Gault. Three years later Zennon moved to Australia, where he honed his skills in some of Australia’s most esteemed kitchens. Zennon returned to Cibo in Auckland before going on a nine-month culinary tour of the world, during which he ...

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September 24, 2023 24 mins

Shae Ronald is the CEO of Youthline

See for privacy information.

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September 17, 2023 22 mins

Michèle trained in journalism and has a degree in English literature and drama from Victoria University of Wellington. She started doing stand-up comedy in the 1990s and has toured New Zealand and international venues with her stand-up comedy shows. Michèle has appeared in many TV shows, including What Now, 7Days and The Project, and was the winner of “Comedienne of the Decade” at the 2010 NZ ...

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September 10, 2023 24 mins

Born and raised in Christchurch, Matt attended Burnside High School. He performed in the improvisation comedy Scared Scriptless.

Matt started as a teenager presenting kid's television show Squirt, before moving on to Studio 2 Live. He recently returned to New Zealand after 6 years in Sydney where he was a Senior Producer for the Australian Broadcasting Company. Before leaving for Sydney...

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September 3, 2023 21 mins

Kaitlin completed a Bachelor of Broadcasting Communications in Journalism at the New Zealand Broadcasting School. She was a newsreader and editor at Mediaworks from 2012 to 2014 before moving to TVNZ in 2015, starting off on Breakfast, before reporting for 1 NEWS, and most recently as a reporter for Fair Go. In that time, she has made her mark covering the Tasman wildfires, pushing to highlight the emerging workplace disease accele...

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August 27, 2023 25 mins

Todd was born in Te Aroha and was raised in Te Puna, north of Tauranga. He attended Tauranga Boys College before earning his Master’s Degree from the University of Waikato. He joined the National Party in 1989 and from 1994 to 1997 he served as Executive Assistant to Jim Bolger during his second term as Prime Minister. He is a former University of Waikato Councillor and sat on the Boards of Plant & Food Research and the Sustain...

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August 20, 2023 24 mins

Petra has worked in TV and radio for over 30 years. She grew up in Christchurch and attended the University of Canterbury, where she completed a Bachelor of Fine Arts. She began her television career at local TV station Cry TV and later co-hosted youth TV series Ice TV and Ice As. She went on to host What’s Really In Our Food? and present TVNZ’s Breakfast.


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August 13, 2023 22 mins

Alfred Ngaro was raised in Te Atatū where he attended the local schools, played for the local Rugby clubs and was an active Te Atatū St Giles Church member. He trained and qualified as an electrician and also completed his theological degree at the Bible College of New Zealand.

Prior to entering Parliament, Alfred was a consultant in community-led development and governance with expertise in New Zealand, Cook Islands and Can...

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Born in Melbourne, Antony Loewenstein is an Australian-German freelance investigative journalist, author, and filmmaker. He co-founded of Declassified Australia in 2021 to uncover Australia’s often secretive relationships with the world. He’s worked in dozens of countries worldwide and was based in South Sudan in 2015 and East Jerusalem between 2016 and 2020. He has written for The New York Times, 

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July 30, 2023 24 mins

Since becoming the first-ever winner of the competitive cooking reality show MasterChef over a decade ago, Australian mum-of-three Julie Goodwin has become a household name. Formerly an IT professional, Julie was thrust into the limelight and TV shows, best-selling books, radio, appearances, columns, and endorsements were all to follow. Her long-time dream of opening a cooking school was realised when she became the resident weekly...

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July 23, 2023 24 mins

Originally from Whangarei, Brad completed his undergraduate studies at Victoria University of Wellington, finishing with a BCom and BA. Brad joined Infometrics in July 2015 as a part-time data analyst while studying and has risen to be one of New Zealand’s most prominent and youngest economic commentators. He was appointed Chief Executive and Principal Economist of Infometrics in February.

At pr...

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