Courtesy photoClassic soul: Harold Melvin’s Blue Notes sing their hits “If You Don’t Know Me By Now

Courtesy photoClassic soul: Harold Melvin’s Blue Notes sing their hits “If You Don’t Know Me By Now

Harold Melvin’s Blue Notes play the Rrazz Room

Who’s in town

Former New York Times reporter Daniel Simpson talks about “A Rough Guide to the Dark Side,” a memoir. [7 p.m., Modern Times Bookstore, 2919 24th St., S.F.]

Lectures

‘Spotlight on Iran’: The series presents a talk on U.S. policy regarding Iran. Former U.S. ambassadors William Luers and Frank Wisner and retired Adm. Eric Olson speak. [6:30 p.m., Westin St. Francis, 335 Powell St., S.F.; RSVP: www.worldaffairs.org]

State budget: Speakers discuss the findings of a six-state study examining how state budget and accounting procedures can threaten fiscal sustainability, and how this affects California. [Noon, Commonwealth Club, 595 Market St., S.F.]

Jonathan Canick: The neuropsychologist discusses how some mental abilities improve, rather than decline, in the aging brain, and how cognition-boosting activities are vital for healthy aging. [6 p.m., Commonwealth Club, 595 Market St., S.F.]

Literary events

Naomi Wolf: The social critic and author of “The Beauty Myth” discusses “Vagina: A New Biography.” [7 p.m., Jewish Community Center, 3200 California St., S.F.]

Marty Brounstein: The local writer talks about “Two Among the Few: A Story of Courage in the Holocaust,” the true story of a Christian couple in the Netherlands who risked their lives to save more than two dozen Jews. [7 p.m., Books Inc., 601 Van Ness Ave., S.F.]

NoViolet Bulawayo: The Zimbabwe-raised fiction writer discusses “In America” and other works, appearing in conversation with Sarah Ladipo Manyika. [6:30 p.m., Museum of the African Diaspora, 685 Mission St., S.F.]

Michael J. Cooper: The novelist talks about “Foxes in the Vineyard.” [7 p.m., BookShop West Portal, 80 West Portal Ave., S.F.]

Lawrence Norfolk: The novelist reads from “John Saturnall’s Feast.” [6 p.m., Book Passage, 1 Ferry Building, S.F.]

At the public library

Book discussion: West Portal Book Club discusses “The Sense of an Ending,” Julian Barnes’ award-winning novel. [2 p.m., West Portal Branch, 190 Lenox Way, S.F.]

Great Teen Book Swap: Teens receive free books with the understanding that they will give the library a bookmark review by the end of the month. [3 p.m., Parkside Branch, 1200 Taraval St., S.F.]

Local activities

Classic soul: Harold Melvin’s Blue Notes sing their hits “If You Don’t Know Me By Now,” “Bad Luck,” “Don’t Leave Me This Way” and more through Sunday at the Rrazz Room. [8 p.m., Hotel Nikko, 222 Mason St., S.F.]

Spoken word: Hip-hop artist and slam poet Saul Williams presents “Chorus,” his spoken-word tour. [8 p.m., Great American Music Hall, 859 O’Farrell St., S.F.]

Faculty Artist Series: Violinist Ian Swensen, joined by pianist Jeffrey LaDeur, appears in recital. [8 p.m., S.F. Conservatory of Music, 50 Oak St., S.F.]

Benefit show: “The Concert for UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital” features headliner Lady Antebellum, at right, and comedian Dana Carvey, along with refreshments and an after-party at City Hall with MC Hammer. [6:30 p.m. reception; 8:15 p.m. performance. Bill Graham Civic Auditorium, 99 Larkin St., S.F.]

Dining out

Bocadillos: The king-salmon collar with sherry-soy glaze and Espelette (a Basque pepper) kimchi is recommended. Also try the heirloom tomatoes with preserved-lemon vinaigrette. [710 Montgomery St., S.F. (415) 982-2622]

Film

French new wave: Yerba Buena Center for the Arts screens “Celine and Julie Go Boating,” filmmaker Jacques Rivette’s seminal 1974 meditation on the art of cinema and the nature of fantasy. [7 p.m., YBCA screening room, 701 Mission St., S.F.]

‘City Scenes’: (((FolkYeah))) and CinemaSF present the sixth installment of the series pairing films with musical performances. The lineup includes “It Came From Beneath the Sea,” the Cold War monster movie in which a giant octopus wreaks mayhem on San Francisco, and the Brothers Comatose, a local folk and bluegrass band. [8 p.m., Vogue Theatre, 3290 Sacramento St., S.F.]

Dino night: NightLife at the California Academy of Sciences presents “Jurassic NightLife,” a dinosaur-themed evening featuring cartoonist Michael Capozzola, Steven Spielberg’s “Jurassic Park” and more. [6 to 10 p.m., 55 Music Concourse Drive, Golden Gate Park, S.F.]

artsGood Dayharold melvinRrazz Room

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