A multi-instrumentalist and instrument maker, Teilhard Frost specializes in traditional Appalachian old time music. He was raised on Manitoulin Island, Ontario, spending time with the elder fiddlers in the area. At the age of three he was given a jaw harp and harmonica by his father, and his mother gave him a fiddle and a record of Kentucky fiddle tunes. He has continued to play them all ever since.
As a teenager, he moved to Southern Ontario, where he took up the more ‘urban’ Saxophone, leaving the fiddle in the case for over ten years.
Coupled with a keen interest in drumming, he pursued a career
as a percussionist, co-founding the acclaimed Cuban Folkloric ensemble, Klave Y Kongo. In the ten years with Klave Y Kongo, the band hosted many Cuban artists including Eliados Ochoa and Quartetto Patria
of Buena Vista Social Club fame. Yet after a while he felt a responsibility to take his Great-Grandfathers fiddle out of the closet and get re-acquainted with the tunes.
During this period he also became the first Canadian didgeridu maker/player to record a full length CD of solo didgeridu music.
In this capacity, Teilhard would tour and demonstrate this unique instrument, working at venues such as HarbourFront Centre in Toronto, The Ontario Science Centre, as well as various schools and universities around the province. This was the developing stage for his show, A Brief History of Music‚ in which he demonstrated the evolution of music, from water buffalo horns to trumpet, step dance to drum set.
A music educator, Teilhard worked at Bloorview-MacMillan Centre
with the Spiral Garden children’s camp for children with special needs.
He also worked with Prologue To The Performing Arts, a Toronto based organisation which programs artists in schools from coast to coast
in Canada. He spent four exciting years working with Prologue, performing the show entitled Old Time Ways, demonstrating traditional accoustic folk music, reaching tens of thousands of students, from first grade right up to University level. At Blue Skies Arts Camp in Clarendon Station, Ontario, from 2006-2016, Teilhard facilitated an instrumental music program and directed the choir. Currently, he gives lessons on fiddle, harmonica and banjo, and group workshops in hambone, body percussion, and jawharp. He continues to work in schools introducing the wonderful world of acoustic, non-electric music.
Teilhard co-founded the band Flapjack in 1997, playing washboard, bones, and harmonica. Flapjack played mainly Canadian fiddle tune repertoire. During this time, he and bandmate Sam Allison became fast friends, playing the old time music of Appalachia and the Mississippi Valley. Then, he and Allison formed their internationally successful group Sheesham, Lotus, and Son with Brian Sanderson on Sousaphone. Together, they have released seven albums as Sheesham, Lotus and Son, the Kings of Old Time!
Teilhard designs and hand crafts gourd and early era banjos. These instruments are sought out and played by celebrated artists such
as Rhiannon Giddens, Daniel Lapp, Arnie Naiman, and Chris Coole.
Teilhard’s latest solo recording, As the Crow Flies, is a collection
of traditional music found in the Appalachian highlands. The songs have strong ties to the British Isles while the fiddle tunes draw on ancient Scandinavian and northern Scottish modal settings and tunings, conjouring a feeling of mystery and drama.
With music as his ambassador, Teilhard has toured throughout North America and Europe for over twenty years. His music has taken him
as far away as Africa, India and Mongolia, studying and teaching.
He lives on Wolfe Island in the St Lawrence River with his partner and their two daughters.