Can anyone tell me why brass bands play marches faster? When did this trend start and why? We were discussing the tempo of Ravenswood which is being used in a local contest and the more Northern band members say it should be done at a whit friday tempo. However, considering the purpose of a march was to move bodies of people from A to B, a slower tempo is used when playing an Alford march for example. BTW: not disagreeing with either - just want to establish how the practice came about.