Bernie Stone was born in Columbus, Ohio, in 1962. He started taking drum lessons at the age of 11, which he did for one and one-half years. At age 12, he began playing country and western gigs in Columbus bars with his grandfather. At the Park Street Middle School in Grove City, Ohio, he played in the symphonic and jazz bands, and at Grove City High School, he was in the marching band during grades 9 and 10. Also while in high school, he joined friends in the band Mercury, playing at school dances, fairs and other local events. At age 17, while a senior in high school, he joined Stormwind, a road band for which he skipped school to travel to various gigs; he was in this band for two years.