My favorite class to play is AA ranger, and second favorite is bard. My preferred playing style is: use bow whenever possible, bluff and backstab when I absolutely have to melee. A while ago I decided to make the Bluffing Ranger, and finally succeeded -- reached level 20 couple weeks ago (and level 21 two days ago):
Bard 2/Ranger 18, third life. Half-elf with rogue dilettante, maxed-out Bluff, past lives ranger and rogue, rogue active PL, Exalted Angel ED barely started (acquired via 6 cleric levels during rogue life).
Originally I had no intention to TR this character ever again -- another +2 on ranged damage on elemental resistances are not worth the trouble. However now that she has an LR +20 heart of wood, I am considering what past life other than ranger might be useful? That is, change current class, then TR into what I still consider the final build -- Bard 2/Ranger 18, rogue dilly.
Monk, paladin and druid are out -- she is chaotic good. Fighter is worthless -- she rarely has trouble hitting anything. Extra hit points from barbarian are not that important, her being self-healing. PL feats which add spell points are nice, but make less and less differences as one rises in level, and also come with DC bonuses useless for a ranger.
I think the best choice is to make her a full bard, then TR. Right now two levels of bard do little. They allow her to have 23 points in Bluff instead of 11, boost her SP a bit, give couple otherwise unavailble spells (Focusing Chant comes handy in bluff/backstab), and provide pathetic TWO Inspire Courage per rest -- as long as Musical Studies is broken. With bard PL these two Inspire Courage become three, and six with active bard PL, enough to last through a quest. Not to mention that active bard PL gives another +1 to all CHA skills -- including Bluff.