Rolando Alarcón Soto (Santiago, 5 de agosto de 1929 - ibídem, 4 de febrero de 1973) fue un destacado folclorista, compositor y profesor chileno.1 Ganó la competición folclórica del Festival Internacional de la Canción de Viña del Mar en 1970 con la canción «El hombre».1
Fue simpatizante y seguidor del Partido Comunista de Chile2 y uno de los representantes del movimiento cultural denominado la Nueva Canción Chilena.
Rolando Alarcón was a Chilean singer/songwriter of the 60s and early 70s. I heard some of his music when I lived in Ecuador in 1969 - my mother Alice had a tape of it, courtesy of some local Peace Corps workers who had traveled to Chile. We listened to it over and over. I loved the songs, and they have haunted me ever since.
Alarcón's lyrics are romantic, humanist, patriotic, profound and beautiful. His music blends a strummed-guitar folk sound with the drums and panpipes of indigenous Andean music, and the harmony is fresh and creative. The overall sound is unique. Alice says: "As a folk poet as well as a musician, Alarcón beats Dylan all hollow." As great as I think Dylan is, I have to agree with her.
Alarcón died in 1973. In an interview, Patricio Manns says that Alarcón suffered an internal hemorrhage and was taken to a first-aid station instead of a hospital, that the doctors there refused to operate on him because they were enemies of Allende, and that he died after five days. This was about 6 months before the Pinochet coup.