Tony Rome, the founder of marketing firm Maven Strategies and a leader in brokering placement arrangements between brand marketers and hip-hop artists, says, "Hip-hop is really the only music genre that embraces brands in their songs and because they are doing it, I think the hip-hop artists should be paid for it." According to brand research firm Agenda, brand names rated 1,000 mentions in the top 20 hip-hop singles last year, with automobiles, liquor and designer fashion leading the way.

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