Gram’s Place is a Hostel Bed and Breakfast located in Tampa FL that was established in 1991 as a result of owner Mark Holland taking a trip to Amsterdam.
Impressed by the tolerant nature of Amsterdam and receiving the Dutch “Gram Parsons Award” created by Henk Korsten of the Netherlands, recognizing Parsons as the official God Father of Country Rock Music, Mark set out with a dream: The idea was to bring all people together through music, the international language.
Working 4 years with John Kravets, Judy Katz, Mark wrote, produced and directed the only Video documentary ever to this day (“The Legend of the Grievous Angel”) for public access Cable in Tampa, on Parsons. Completed in April of 1989, The following Nov. he made his first trip to Amsterdam.
With only a dream of a place where all people could gather in the Spirit of “Music” and “Mitakuye Oyasin”(a native American word which means “We are all related” Gram’s Place was born.
In the beginning a name for this Hostel Bed & Breakfast in Hillsborough County was needed and from the beginning “Gram’s Place” seemed to fit.
The dream was reinforced by many people since 1991. It was the joining of “Spirits” between Mark Holland and Brenda McClintock (then from Ohio, now from Yucca Valley Calf.) in 1993, as well as the support of all who have stayed that has brought Gram’s Place Hostel to where it is today.
Gram’s Place Hostel is not for everyone, but we feel everyone will find it interesting and unique.
It was the suggestion of a past guest that the quaint brick walk way connecting the two properties was named “Gram Straat” (Straat is Dutch for Street.) with street signs making it official. Each room has it’s own comment book and many past guests ideas have been a part of creating this hostel and will continue in the future.
A CD featuring the collaboration of Mark Holland/Julien Robitaille/Walt Leuzinger and well known pedal steel guitarist Neil Flanz has been released.
Click Here for More on the Album - STILL SAFE AT HOME
Also featured is a young talented Canadian friend of Mark’s named Julien Robitaille (from Montreal Quebec) whose vocal harmony and guitar work blend together beautifully with Mark’s raw, soulful vocals. Julien also sings lead vocals, and are built around Neil Flanz’s pedal steel resulting in an album that’s sure to please just about everyone whose musical tastes lean toward raw, traditional roots of Americana music.
The variety of songs includes everything from the Rolling Stone’s “Dead Flowers” and “Wild Horses” to honkeytonk music including “Close up the honkeytonks”, Merle Haggard’s “Everybody’s had the blues”, to several Gram Parsons songs including “Juanita” “My Uncle” “Hot Burritto #1″, Elvis Costello’s “Stranger in the House” , to an old standard by Doc Watson “Way Downtown” as well as two songs by the Blue Yodeler Jimmie Rodgers “Miss the Mississippi and You” and the last song Jimmie ever recorded “15 years ago”.
Since the summer of 1994 , Pedal steel guitar player Neil Flanz (who toured with Gram Parsons and Emmylou Harris in 1973 ) has been staying each summer since 1994 at Gram’s Place to rest, relax and play music. Local musicians/singers from Tampa are Mark Holland, John McEwen, Sam Osborn, Jack Herbert, Jack Dickson, Billy Artlip and John Rogers, David Lane, and Tampa’s own blues singer/songwriter WAZ. One song (Hot Burrito # 1) off of this CD was released in Canada in Dec. 99 called Northern Steel – Debbo Productions.
For Information on how to obtain a copy of this CD titled “Still Safe at Home” The Porch Pickers with Neil Flanz contact: email@example.com
In Feb of 2004 Neil Flanz moved to Austin Texas and is now playing regular with a band called REO. His current Phone # is (512) 383-0842 His E-mail is firstname.lastname@example.org
Mark, a lifelong resident of Tampa Heights, lived life on his terms and will be remembered by family and friends as an unpretentious, unique and special person. His passion was music and he was considered a music historian by many. He enjoyed many exceptional relationships with close friends as well as with guests.
He will be missed dearly!