Sam Butera, 81, a saxophonist who kept lounge entertainment in Las Vegas swinging for 50 years, has died.

Mr. Butera died Wednesday of pneumonia at Sunrise Hospital in Las Vegas, daughter Cheryl Butera said.

A New Orleans native, Mr. Butera shared the stage as the sidekick of singer and trumpet player Louis Prima and Prima's wife, singer Keely Smith.

He first joined Prima at a lounge gig at the Sahara hotel-casino in 1954, assembling a band called the Witnesses before moving to Las Vegas. Together, their hits included "Just a Gigolo/I Ain't Got Nobody."

Prima died in 1978, but Mr. Butera didn't stop playing until 2004, after touring, acting, and collaborating with other famous entertainers. - AP