Baltimore classic rock band marks 25 years

Members of the classic rock band, “Bad Neighbors,” will perform a 25th anniversary concert at 9:30 p.m. April 4 at The Cat’s Eye Pub in Fells Point. (Tom McCarthy Jr. | CR Staff)

By Elizabeth Lowe
TOWSON – How have members of the classic rock band, “Bad Neighbors,” managed to stay together for a quarter-century?
“We actually like each other,” said Dave Pugh, a guitarist and vocalist for the band.
Bad Neighbors, which includes several members who attended a local Catholic high school together, is scheduled to perform its 25th anniversary concert at 9:30 p.m. April 4 at The Cat’s Eye Pub in Fells Point, four days after marking its anniversary.
Pugh, Bill Phelan, on guitar and vocals, and Pat Scally, on acoustic guitar and vocals, are the band’s founding members. Drummer Rich Behles joined in 1998 and Frank Murphy, on bass and vocals, in 2009.
“We have overlapping musical talents,” said Phelan, 63, a parishioner of St. Joseph in Cockeysville.
Phelan, Behles and Murphy graduated from Loyola Blakefield in Towson in 1969. Scally is a 1968 graduate of St. Paul Latin High School in Baltimore. Pugh, a non-Catholic, volunteers at his son’s school, St. Francis of Assisi in Baltimore.
“We feel very fortunate we found each other,” said Scally, 63, a parishioner of Church of the Immaculate Conception in Towson.
Bad Neighbors has performed nearly 600 shows over the years, with about half at The Cat’s Eye. The band has gigs once or twice each month.
In addition to playing at establishments similar to The Cat’s Eye, Bad Neighbors performs at weddings, parties and fundraisers. 
“Each performance is a little bit different,” Scally said. “It’s very organic, all the time.”
The quintet plays music primarily from the 1960s, 70s and 80s, and some from the 50s and 90s. Bad Neighbors’ repertoire includes country, bluegrass and Irish music. They cover groups and artists including The Beatles, Eric Clapton, R.E.M. and Bob Dylan.
“We are a real band,” said Pugh, 56. “We’re very good. We get out.”
These days, if – and when – the band rehearses, they practice in Phelan’s garage, amidst golf clubs, beach chairs and Christmas decorations.
“We’re still going,” said Behles, 62, who worships at St. Isaac Jogues in Carney. “I don’t think we’ve lost anything in the way of energy. We feel like we’ve got that kick.”
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