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Riot Fest Partner, Cobra Lounge Owner Sean McKeough Has Passed Away

By Tankboy in Arts & Entertainment on Dec 1, 2016 3:17PM

Photo courtesy Riot Fest

Sean McKeough, 42, passed away suddenly on Tuesday. McKeough was well known to both the Chicago music and entertainment scene. McKeough was a partner and producer of Riot Fest, owned Cobra Lounge and All Rise Brewing, and was one of the originators of the Motoblot weekend block party.

Riot Fest founder Michael Petryshyn released a statement on his death:

Sean was Riot Fest’s pillar of strength. I loved him. I admired him. And to lose him is a lonely and barren feeling. I miss my friend immensely. Without Sean and his belief that a little fest could make a positive impact on people’s lives by doing things differently and left of the dial, Riot Fest would have never become such an intimate family. His Herculean-sized heart and volition made that all possible. Anyone lucky enough to have witnessed his kindness and compassion knows Sean’s muddy work boots will never be filled. It’s impossible… he cared when no one else did. He worked when no one else did. And, he believed in Riot Fest when no one else did.

McKeough got his start at the Chicago Board Of Trade, but retired from that life to devote himself to the music and culture he was most passionate about. It's hard to overstate the effect he's had on the Chicago music scene, especially its punk and metal factions, through his years of support through various venues including Cobra, AAA Fence Company and, of course, Riot Fest.

Over the years we frequently encountered McKeough, and can verify he was a man who embraced life and appreciated all that it offered him. A vibrant and charismatic figure, he attracted like-minded individuals, and we think the proof of that is reflected in the legacy left behind of the various projects he was involved with.