Peter Dankelson on how guitar was shocked into his system by AC/DC, and why nothing was going to stop him playing

Peter Dankelson
(Image credit: Derick Smith)

By any measure, 21-year-old Peter Dankelson has already faced a lifetime of adversity. Born with a rare craniofacial condition called Goldenhar Syndrome (characterized by abnormal development of the eye, ear and spine), he’s undergone 37 surgeries to correct jaw and airway defects, and he’s fitted with a Cochlear implant to do the work of a missing left ear.

“There’s been a lot of challenges, but you just can’t dwell on them,” Dankelson says. “Things could always be worse, so it’s best to look on the bright side. My family has always supported me, and I’ve had many other people who have helped me along the way.”

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Joe Bosso

Joe is a freelance journalist who has, over the past few decades, interviewed hundreds of guitarists for Guitar World, Guitar Player, MusicRadar and Classic Rock. He is also a former editor of Guitar World, contributing writer for Guitar Aficionado and VP of A&R for Island Records. He’s an enthusiastic guitarist, but he’s nowhere near the likes of the people he interviews. Surprisingly, his skills are more suited to the drums. If you need a drummer for your Beatles tribute band, look him up.