'Juno' director Jason Reitman's latest, 'Up in the Air': Hear his hand-picked soundtrack star here

According to my officemate Dave Karger, the George Clooney dramedy Up in the Air is set to be one of the major contenders in this year’s Oscar race. He’s thinking Best Picture, Best Director, and Best Actor, for sure.

Maybe he should add Best Song to that list: “Help Yourself,” an original composition by Chicago-based musician Sad Brad Smith, is featured during a pivotal wedding scene in the film. It’s not exactly the kind of upbeat anthem the Academy usually goes for, but the acoustic tune is a perfect fit for the movie’s melancholy mood.

Check out the song below, and let us know what you think.

Fun fact: Director Jason Reitman got a tip from his brother-in-law to check out Smith, who was playing in a Chicago coffee shop. Reitman liked what he heard and asked Smith to compose a song for the movie’s soundtrack (out Dec. 1, and also featuring Crosby, Stills and Nash and the Black Keys’ Dan Auerbach). It begs the question: If he’s writing cool songs for A-list movies, why is Sad Brad still sad?

More from EW’s Music Mix:
Bruce Springsteen’s Hall of Fame performance still on after tragedy causes Kansas City cancellation
CMJ Music Fest: ‘next big thing’ bands do NYC
Warpaint: The Music Mix recommends
Leonard Cohen at Madison Square Garden: The master at 75

Norah Jones’ “Chasing Pirates” video
‘Once’ more: The Swell Season’s Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova

Comments (13 total) Add your comment
  • kiwette

    great song

  • Danny K.


  • bonnie

    truly a beautiful sentiment, and a lovely song. love the melody.

  • Cheryl

    i love that song so much.

  • lumbajack

    I went to college with this guy. He’s not only a great musician but an extremely gifted actor too. He’s briefly in the movie the Ice Harvest. Go Brad!

  • Aushim

    Definite Best Song contender!

  • Layne Tretow

    Really nice – sounds a little like early Paul Simon. Keep writing!

  • Cuz

    Wonderful lyrics, great melody! Gets my vote for Best Song!

  • Krobin

    This is a perfectly beautiful song. I can’t wait to see how it layers onto the movie. For sure should get an academy nod …

  • cuzinlaw

    This song kicks butt. Can’t wait to see the movie!

  • Jonathan Patterson


  • sjs

    this would be a great song if it were sung in tune.

    • dale m

      amazing to me that nobody else has mentioned this!

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