1. In 2014, acoustic scientist Trevor Cox shattered the world record for longest ever echo. As an acoustic engineering at the University of Salford in Manchester, he recorded the sound of a gunshot echo in an oil tank. It lasted a full 75 seconds.
2. Martha and Muffins’ single “Echo Beach” released in 1979 made Q magazine’s list of 1001 top songs of all time. Craving pantsuits and turtlenecks? Google the video and dance around.
3. You only hear echoes if they come back more than .1 seconds after the original holler. Sound travels 34 meters in .1 seconds. So this means you only hear echoes from surfaces at least 17 meters away.
4. Concert halls want a little echo to soften the sounds but not too much to avoid confusing the new sounds. Then came the ‘60s and the introduction of reverberation into rock and roll.
5. You’d assume that yodeling’s natural origins lie in the phenomenon of the echo. However, yodel composer Heinrich Leuthold says the yodel is also indigenous to regions that have no natural yodel conditions, like the open plains. While this may be true, Hank Williams’ classic “Long Gone Lonesome Blues” sounds better floating through a canyon than it does in a wheat field.
6. The ECHO power tool brand manufacturers products that include leaf blowers, brush cutters, pruners, hedge trimmers and weed wackers, just to name a few handy items banned in all wilderness areas.
7. About half of the 900 species of bats use a little echo trick to navigate the night. Echolocation is a type of SONAR—sound navigation and ranging. Think of it as a very highly evolved game of Marco Polo. Toothed whales, dolphins and shrews also use echolocation.
8. By 2005, sales of Toyota’s sub-compact Echo had fallen and this utilitarian marshmallow was discontinued and replaced by the equally ugly Prius. Meanwhile, Tom Robson (shown here) just scrapped his long-loved 2004 Echo and bought another with fewer miles. The rest of the automotive world hopes this is one echo we will never hear from again.