Originally Posted by Trespass
Having an appropriate instrument for your genre demonstrates you take the art seriously. It's the same thing for string players, horn players etc. auditioning.
If you were going to audition to get into a prestigious metal band, would you show up with a Squire and a Fender Princeton?
If I could make it sound killer, yes. (But I couldn't. :P)
Sure it feels a little stupid if someone comes in to play serious jazz with a cheap, crappy gloss black 7-string instead of one of those actual jazz guitars. So having one is going to give you maybe that tiny 1% more in the eyes of the observers.
But here's a true story: my friend was applying for the same conservatory I was in, a year after me. I was a little worried about the impression he was going to be giving, since he was going to play Armando's Rhumba on bass, with only a metronome to back him up. I thought maybe having a great and elaborate backing track would help give a more prepared, researched, devoted image to the teachers (whereas only a metronome would say "I couldn't find any backing track"). Wrong. He just played it, ....ing nailed every section, got into school, end of story. The teachers told me none of that extra matters one bit, just play well. Of course, this was in Finland and not in Berklee... but I think it makes perfect sense.
Which song(s) are you going to play btw?