The Marching Percussion Instrument Tenors, were first created in the early 1960's. Tenors first came out to the world of Percussion when in 1967 the Boston Crusaders (a DCI Corps) attached two Marching Bass Drums horizontally on a carrier. The next year in 1968, the Boston Crusaders came out with the first official Tri-Toms, and so Tenors began to become more popular. As the years progressed, more drums were added and new companies made them. The next drum to come out were the Quad Drums, a series of four drums on a carrier each with a different pitch. At this point, it became necessary to assign new terminology to the drums and new names. Since there were now two types of drums, they started a general term for the Trips and Quads and started calling them Tenors.

Now, Tenors range from 4-6 drums and have various names. Six drums can be called Squints, or Sextets, five drums are called Quints, and four drums are called Quads, but all can be called Tenors. The 1 or 2 highest pitch drums can be called many different names such as: Gok, Spock, Spot, and even Pop drums. Tenors are now an essential part of Marching Percussion and can't be taken out of the modern Drumline. Tenors are now shown beside other instruments like Snares and Basses and Cymbals and continue to grow at an alarming rate.