Jump (Van Halen song)

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Van Halen - Jump.jpg
Single by Van Halen
from the album 1984
B-side "House of Pain"
Released December 21, 1983
Format 7", CD single
Genre Synth rock, hard rock[1]
Length 4:02
Label Warner Bros.
Producer(s) Ted Templeman
Van Halen singles chronology
"I'll Wait"

"I'll Wait"
Audio sample

"Jump" is a song by American hard rock band Van Halen. It was released in December 1983 as the lead single from their album 1984. It is Van Halen's most successful single to date, reaching #1 on the US Billboard Hot 100.[2] The song differs from earlier Van Halen songs in that it is driven by a keyboard line (played on an Oberheim OB-Xa), although the song does contain a guitar solo, which was spliced together from multiple takes. David Lee Roth dedicated the song to martial artist Benny Urquidez, of whom he was a student.[3]

Writing and composition[edit]

The synth line was written around 1981 by Eddie Van Halen but it was refused by the other members of the band. In 1983, producer Ted Templeman asked Roth to take a listen to the unused song idea. Riding around in the back of his 1951 Mercury, with band roadie Larry Hostler driving, Roth listened repeatedly to the song. To come up with a lyric for it, he remembered seeing a television news report the night before about a man who was threatening to commit suicide by jumping off a high building. Roth thought that one of the onlookers of such a scene would probably shout "go ahead and jump". Roth bounced this suggestion off Hostler who agreed it was good. Instead of being about a threatened suicide, the words were written as an invitation to love. Roth later told Musician magazine that Hostler was "probably the most responsible for how it came out."[4]

Ted Templeman recalls that "'Jump' was recorded at Ed's studio. [Engineer] Donn [Landee] and Ed put the track down alone in the middle of the night. We recut it once in one take for sonic reasons. Dave wrote the lyrics that afternoon in the backseat of his Mercury convertible. We finished all vocals that afternoon and mixed it that evening".[5]

The song was listed by The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum as one of the "500 Songs that Shaped Rock and Roll."[6]

Live performances of "Jump" are preceded by Eddie's synthesizer solo "1984". During the reunion tour with Roth, the two songs were used for the band's encore. Roth often waved a large red flag during the synth section while the stage was still coated in dark cover lights.

According to Daryl Hall of Hall & Oates, "[Eddie] Van Halen told me that he copied the synth part from 'Kiss on My List' and used it in ‘Jump.’ I don't have a problem with that at all."[7]

Van Halen performs "Jump", November 10, 2007

Music video[edit]

The music video for "Jump" was directed entirely by David Lee Roth himself. It is a straightforward performance clip, much like many of the hard rock videos of the time.[8] It was nominated for three MTV Video Music Awards, and won "Best Stage Performance" for the video.

The video was groundbreaking and set the standard for performance videos that directors still try to emulate.[citation needed] To produce such a video, the band is recorded performing the song several times from beginning to end. Then, the band members are shot doing random stage moves without the pretense of actually playing the song (note that Eddie is seen playing the guitar at times when no guitar can be heard). Some candid footage is shot with the band goofing around, and then the footage is edited into a video.

The version of the song used for the video differs slightly from the album version. During the keyboard solo prior to the final refrain, David Lee Roth is heard (and seen) yelling out. He did this during the band's mock performance for the video's filming, and it is believed that afterwards he overdubbed this yell especially for the video version since it is not present in the song to begin with.[citation needed]

Sporting anthem[edit]

It is played before the start of each home game of Olympique de Marseille and Brøndby IF. It is also played every time A.C. Milan scores a goal at their home ground, San Siro.

In the late 1980s to the early 1990s, the original Winnipeg Jets used it as their intro song before home games. Starting in 2016, the Winnipeg Jets have used the song as the goal song, replacing "Shout" by the Isley Brothers.


"Jump" was ranked number 15 on VH1's 100 Greatest Songs of the 1980s.

"Jump" was the theme song for the introduction of Chicago Cubs broadcasts on WGN-TV in 1984 and 1985.


Charts and certifications[edit]

In popular culture[edit]

Jump was featured in the opening sequence of Ready Player One released in March 2018.

It was also featured in the film Sing (2016 American film) and Despicable Me 3


See also[edit]


  1. ^ Popoff, Martin (2014). The Big Book of Hair Metal. Voyageur Press. p. 58. ISBN 9781627883757. 
  2. ^ Whitburn, Joel. The Billboard Book of Top 40 Hits, 6th ed, Billboard Publications, Inc. 1996. ISBN 0-8230-7632-6
  3. ^ Christe, Ian (2009). Everybody Wants Some: The Van Halen Saga. John Wiley & Sons. p. 97. ISBN 978-0-470-53618-6. 
  4. ^ Crouse, Richard (2012). Who Wrote The Book Of Love?. Doubleday Canada. p. 144. ISBN 9780385674423. 
  5. ^ Van Halen: A visual history: 1978-1984, Neil Zlozower, 2008
  6. ^ "500 Songs that Shaped Rock and Roll Archived 2007-05-02 at the Wayback Machine.." The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum, 2007.
  7. ^ "Classic Tracks: Hall & Oates "I Can't Go For That (No Can Do)" Archived 2006-08-30 at the Wayback Machine.". mixonline.com, 2006.
  8. ^ "mvdbase.com - Van Halen - "Jump [version 1: concept]"". mvdbase.com. Retrieved 16 January 2017. 
  9. ^ Kent, David (1993). Australian Chart Book 1970–1992. Australian Chart Book. ISBN 0-646-11917-6. 
  10. ^ "Austriancharts.at – Van Halen – Jump" (in German). Ö3 Austria Top 40.
  11. ^ "Ultratop.be – Van Halen – Jump" (in Dutch). Ultratop 50.
  12. ^ Lesueur, InfoDisc, Daniel Lesueur, Dominic Durand,. "InfoDisc : Bilan des Ventes par Artiste". infodisc.fr. Retrieved 16 January 2017. 
  13. ^ "Musicline.de – Van Halen Single-Chartverfolgung" (in German). Media Control Charts. PhonoNet GmbH.
  14. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2013-10-18. Retrieved 2009-07-03. 
  15. ^ "Hit Parade Italia - Top Settimanali Single". hitparadeitalia.it. Retrieved 16 January 2017. 
  16. ^ "Nederlandse Top 40 – Van Halen" (in Dutch). Dutch Top 40.
  17. ^ "Charts.org.nz – Van Halen – Jump". Top 40 Singles.
  18. ^ "Swedishcharts.com – Van Halen – Jump". Singles Top 100.
  19. ^ "Swisscharts.com – Van Halen – Jump". Swiss Singles Chart.
  20. ^ "UK Top 40 Chart Archive, British Singles & Album Charts". everyHit.com. 2000-03-16. Retrieved 2011-11-03. 
  21. ^ a b "Van Halen Songs ••• Top Songs / Chart Singles Discography ••• Music VF, US & UK hits charts". musicvf.com. Retrieved 16 January 2017. 
  22. ^ "Item Display - RPM - Library and Archives Canada". collectionscanada.gc.ca. Retrieved 16 January 2017. 
  23. ^ "Hit Parade Italia - Top Annuali Single: 1984". hitparadeitalia.it. Retrieved 16 January 2017. 
  24. ^ Currin, Brian. "South African Rock Lists Website - Hits 1984". rock.co.za. Retrieved 16 January 2017. 
  25. ^ "The CASH BOX Year-End Charts: 1984". cashboxcountdowns. December 29, 1984. Archived from the original on July 11, 2012. 
  26. ^ "Italian single certifications – Van Halen – Jump" (in Italian). Federazione Industria Musicale Italiana. Retrieved June 10, 2015. 
  27. ^ "American single certifications – Van Halen – Jump". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved February 13, 2016.  If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Single, then click SEARCH
  28. ^ "Aztec Camera | Artist". Official Charts. Retrieved 8 October 2013. 
  29. ^ Chilvers, C.J. The Van Halen Encyclopedia (Paperback), p. 156 (2001)

External links[edit]