Stiernberg, a protege of the late Jethro Burns (in fact, he played rhythm guitar on Burns' final recording sessions), is a preeminent jazz mandolinist in his own right. He has recorded with a Roberts Tiny Moore electric, but currently divides his time between three instruments:
Don writes that he uses round-wound electric guitar strings in the following gauges: .010, .014, .024, .038, .050, and plays through "a cheap Fender amp: Stage 160 I think. It has an EV speaker and has been modified somewhat. My favorite electric mando sounds have come from older Fender Twins—nice and clean, full tone." To hear Don play electric, check out the following CDs: Luke and the Cool Hands by Luke Nelson has the Stevens on almost every cut, playing Luke Nelson's original Western swing tunes. Fidgety Feet is a swing CD for kids and families that had "Roly Poly" and "Party for the Old Folks" on it. For details, see Don's Web site.
His recording projects include Unseasonably Cool and About Time, two sets of jazz standards with Don as bandleader, and The Swing Sessions, a collection of duets with guitarist John Parrott. Don used his acoustic mandolins for these CDs. He has also worked with Chicago band Blake'n'Blue, and done session work on many other recordings.