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

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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