he and Marshall (of Marshall Amp fame...dont know his first name)
"Best" is a subjective term. I can pick my favorites. Blackmore hands down my favorite.
Earl Slick (who?) is #2 on my list (good enough for Bowie and Lennon, good enough for me).
Vernon Reid of Living Colour...(good enough for Jagger...).
Another suprise pick would be taking Billy Duffy of The Cult at #4 (Sonic Temple has to be the best guitar album of all-time).
#5 I might go with Townsend just for his writing skills, creativity, and the man bleeds for his music.
I'm sure tomorrow I could come back with someone completely different at 3, 4, and 5, but Blackmore and Slick stay 1-2 for me.
But then I'm just a mule....and a drummer.... (which reminds me...what about Lifeson???