Finish What Ya Started

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"Finish What Ya Started"
Van Halen - Finish What Ya Started.jpg
Single by Van Halen
from the album OU812
B-side"Sucker in a 3 Piece"
ReleasedSeptember 1988
Studio5150 Studios, Hollywood, California
LabelWarner Bros.
Van Halen singles chronology
"When It's Love"
"Finish What Ya Started"
"Feels So Good"

"Finish What Ya Started" is a song by Van Halen taken from their 1988 album OU812. Despite the album being seemingly complete, Eddie Van Halen came up with the riff at 2 in the morning and went down to his then-neighbor Sammy Hagar to show it. Hagar let Eddie in, and the two played guitars in his balcony until they had a completed song. Once Eddie left, Hagar decided to write the lyrics despite being late at night. The theme wound up being unfulfilled sex, summed up by Hagar as "blue balls".[1][2] In the song, Eddie Van Halen recorded his guitar part on a Fender Stratocaster plugged direct into the studio mixing console. The song is one of only two Van Halen tracks featuring Sammy Hagar playing a rhythm guitar part, which he played on a Gibson acoustic.[citation needed]

The official music video for the song was directed by Andy Morahan.[3] It features the band playing against a plain white background with quick cuts to women dancing. The version of the song on their 2004 compilation The Best of Both Worlds stops midway through the outro, unlike the fade out on the OU812 version.

In 1988, the song peaked at #13 on the Billboard Hot 100 and #2 on the Billboard rock chart.


  1. ^ Everybody Wants Some: The Van Halen Saga
  2. ^ Dodds, Kevin. Edward Van Halen: A Definitive Biography. p. 146.
  3. ^ Garcia, Alex S. " – Van Halen - "Finish what ya started"". Music Video DataBase. Retrieved November 1, 2015.