Starting in 1979, Shorty made contributions to Blackfoot's music. He wrote the Top 40 hit "Train Train" (released on the album Strikes), and played harmonica on the track. For the follow-up album Tomcattin', Shorty co-wrote the song "Fox Chase" and gave the song a short introduction. For Marauder, Shorty co-wrote "Rattlesnake Rock 'n' Roller" and played banjo on the track. Shorty had also appeared on Blackfoot's 1975 debut album, No Reservations, singing a version of "Railroad Man" (which he also wrote).