Flight 505: A Novella

1 September 2015

Billy Sooner made it big. Mickey and Al were left behind. In a bid to recapture the past, they hope to reunite on stage at Madison Square Gardens, before Mickey’s shady past and bingo dauber heroin send them on a trip they can’t come back from.

  • ISBN 978-1-937794-73-6 (paperback) available used at Amazon (Canada; USA).
  • ISBN 978-1-937794-70-5 (epub).
  • ISBN 978-1-937794-71-2 (mobi).
  • Out of print.
  • Discuss this book at Goodreads.

About | Reviews

About this book:

Flight 505 is bloody, bleak, meditative, funny, and, on one level or another, all about music, musicians, and the glory and damage of their world.

Author Leslie Bohem was part of the great Los Angeles music scare of the early 1980s. His band, Gleaming Spires, had a cultish hit with their single, “Are You Ready For the Sex Girls” (if you ever saw Revenge of the Nerds, you know) and he was at the same time holding down a day job as the bass player with the band Sparks.

After this burgeoning career in rock and roll stopped burgeoning, he found a job writing screenplays about rock and roll musicians whose careers had stopped burgeoning. But no one makes movies about rock and roll musicians whose careers etc, and so he wrote A Nightmare on Elm Street Part 5, The Horror Show and bits and pieces of several other memorable epics. Eventually Twenty Bucks, which he wrote based on a 1935 script by his dad, Endre, was made. The movie earned critical raves and several awards, including an Independent Spirit Award. His other screenwriting credits include Daylight, Dante’s Peak, The Alamo, Kid, Nowhere To Run, The Darkest Hour, and the mini-series Taken which he wrote and executive produced (with Steven Spielberg) and for which he won an Emmy award.

He’s had songs recorded by Emmylou Harris, Randy Travis, Freddy Fender, Steve Gillette, Johnette Napolitano (of Concrete Blonde), Alvin (of the Chipmunks), and the awesome Misty Martinez. His short stories have appeared in some rather embarrassing men’s magazines, in several magazines including Sanitarium and The Lost Coast Review, and on Derek Haas’ site, Popcorn Fiction, where two of them, “DMT” and “Honeymoon” have been optioned and will hopefully be coming to a theater near you soon. Right now, he’s developing his series Shut Eye for Hulu. His new album, Moved to Duarte, will be up and out soon.

Follow him on instagram @movedtoduarte.


…a no-bullshit and captivating peek false-glam/true-grit world of being a rock musician in LA. Bohem’s amazing and the fact that he is consistently creating is a beautiful thing.

—Heather Drain, Mondo Heather, 5 September 2015

If Rod Serling and Alfred Hitchcock showed more interest in the new wave scene out of Los Angeles in the late 1970s and early 1980s instead of the French new wave films by Truffaut, they might have been two of the characters in the Les Bohem underground classic Flight 505. If you missed the scene, then this is your chance to get a taste of the noise, the buzz and the nazz, while flying high in the clubs in Chinatown and everywhere else in this God forsaken landscape. If you were there, the unpredictable storytelling will take you by surprise. Fasten your seat belt and take a quick ride to the dark side of town, where the bands played sloppy and loud and the Hollywood girls and boys lived as if there was no tomorrow. Flight 505 is boarding now. All seats are sold out. Stand by is no longer available.

Get your copy before it’s too late.

—Marvin Etzioni

A generational voice of singular resonance—elevating what in other less skilled hands is simply genre, becomes a minor classic that fully captures a moment in our culture, one that will always look different to those who take the time to read this.

—John Steppling

Les Bohem writes a story with the same easy style that people share them in conversation. In Flight 505, he brought me back to the noir and punk rock-informed Los Angeles of my youth, with recognizable characters and situations as though he were describing an actual night we’d been at the same place at the same time. This is no romantic memory; it is, instead, a richer, in-depth portrayal of a scene and late 20th Century American Dream of “making it” in rock n roll. Much more than “rock n roll fiction,” Flight 505 is a cautionary tale about knowing oneself and being able to live to tell.

—Theresa K.

Flight 505 pays dark homage to the Southern California post-punk music scene. Through the story of three band-mates drawn to Los Angeles during its rock club heyday, Les Bohem skillfully deconstructs the adolescent male’s archetypal dream of rock and roll stardom. Bohem’s prose carries the cautionary weight of his having been there. The problem with most rock and roll fiction is that it invariably falls prey to its own self-importance. Flight 505 begs to differ.

—Rodney Crowell

I’m not one for reading rock and roll writing. I find it either terribly clichéd or over-fantasized. Having definitely been there and definitely done that, I was immediately familiar with and felt real affection for Les’ dysfunctional family of characters.

Every dirty club floor, cheap beer and chronic loser truly lives and breathes in this story, and Les’ amazing recollection of and attention to detail are so impeccable if you weren’t in L.A. back in the ’80s, you’ll certainly feel as if you are… and if you weren’t in a band, well, this is what it was like. A great read.

—Johnette Napolitano

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Kickstarter for Floodgate 2 Press release: Flight 505 takes off


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